Mansfield Town worry over Adi Yussuf Tanzania call-up

Mansfield vs Rainworth - Adi Yussuf - Pic By James Williamson
Mansfield vs Rainworth - Adi Yussuf - Pic By James Williamson

Mansfield Town are concerned how long they would be without striker Adi Yussuf if he accepts a call-up to the Tanzania national squad.

Stags understand he could be away for almost three weeks for a training camp on top of the game and boss Adam Murray admits that would be tough on Mansfield with such a small squad.

The 23-year-old is among five foreign-based players in a 29-man squad called up for the game with Nigeria on September 5 by Taifa Stars’ head coach, Charles Boniface Mkwassa.

To prepare for the match, the team will stay together in Dar es Salaam for one week before departing for Istanbul, Turkey, on August 23, to set up a 10-day camp to prepare for their second match of the qualifiers.

In Turkey, the Taifa Stars will play two friendly matches against Libya and Kuwait before returning back in the country to face the ‘Super Eagles’ of Nigeria.

However, Murray said: “I want him to go there for an hour and come back. Obviously these things are nice honours to have. But in the blood and guts and thick of it all we’ve got games to win and I will have a conversation with Adi.

“Obviously his bread and butter is paying the mortgage so we will sit down and see what his views are, but we want Adi Yussuf in our squad. He is someone who has missed a big part of pre-season so we want to get him up to pace.

“We know he has got goals in him. He showed last night, he was on for 20 minutes and should have scored. The fitter he gets, the sharper he gets and that’s a goal last night.

“On Saturday he came on for the same and should have scored again so we need to get him up to match speed.”

He added: “It’s always an honour to get called up for your country. He deserves it as he’s a good player. But the other side of it is that we want to be successful in League Two this year and Adi Yussuf is a part of that.

“I think it’s two weeks (the camp), but that’s a lot of games the way this league is, and the way our squad is we can’t afford people going away to summer camp. I will sit down with him and see where his head is at. The type of lad he is, he is really focused on getting back into full time professional football and making everyone aware what he is about.

“He wants to make his mark on League football and the way he does that is by playing League football.”