Adel Taarabt targets Morocco cup role in defiance of Harry Redknapp
QPR playmaker wants to take part in African Cup of Nations
Wednesday 19 December 2012
The Queen's Park Rangers midfielder Adel Taarabt wants to play for Morocco in the African Cup of Nations next month despite manager Harry Redknapp's plea for him to help the Premier League club fight against relegation.
QPR lie second bottom, five points from safety, and Redknapp, who replaced Mark Hughes last month, wants the club's player of the season in 2010-11 to miss the tournament, which runs from 19 January to 10 February.
"He [Redknapp] came to see me to ask me not to go but I told him: 'If they call me, I can't refuse, boss,'" Taarabt said. "I love my country, I love the Moroccan people and football means a lot to them. I warned him the only solution was if the coach doesn't call me up."
Taarabt has been out of favour with Morocco coach Rachid Taoussi in recent months but scored twice to help QPR register their first league win of the season last weekend. "I miss it. I love my country, I can't refuse to go," he said.
Rangers, who are also likely to be without Mali's Samba Diakité, are not the only top-flight club set to lose crucial players next month. Chelsea midfielder John Obi Mikel will probably be called up for Nigeria, while Tottenham Hotspur's chances of keeping Emmanuel Adebayor at the club next month were reduced yesterday when the Togo manager, Didier Six, pledged to do everything he can to persuade the forward to represent his homeland at the tournament in South Africa.
The 28-year-old recently put his international career on hold after a dispute with the Togolese federation over match bonuses. But Six said: "I am doing everything I can to get him to come back to us."
African absentees: Who will go to African Cup of Nations?
Arsenal Gervinho (Ivory Coast), Marouane Chamakh (Morocco)
Aston Villa Karim El Ahmadi (Morocco)
Chelsea John Obi Mikel, Victor Moses (both Nigeria)
Fulham Mohamadou Diarra (Mali)
Liverpool Oussama Assaidi (Morocco)
Manchester City Kolo Touré, Yaya Touré (both Ivory Coast)
Newcastle Cheik Tioté (Ivory Coast)
Queen's Park Rangers Samba Diakité (Mali), Adel Taarabt (Morocco)
Southampton Emmanuel Mayuka (Zambia)
West Bromwich Albion Youssuf Mulumbu (Congo), Peter Odemwingie (Nigeria)
West Ham Guy Demel (Ivory Coast), Modibo Maiga (Mali)
Wigan Arouna Koné (Ivory Coast)
* The tournament takes place in South Africa from 19 January to 10 February.
Latest in Sport
Frank Lampard equalises for Manchester City against Chelsea: how Twitter reacted
All Blacks Aaron Cruden misses New Zealand flight after drinking session, has brilliant excuse
Manchester City vs Chelsea match report: Frank Lampard shows no joy after denying Chelsea victory
Leicester City 5 Manchester United 3 player ratings: Leonard Ulloa? Radamel Falcao? Jamie Vardy? Angel Di Maria? Who was the star man?
Leicester City vs Manchester United match report: Jamie Vardy runs lopsided United ragged in amazing comeback
- 1 All Blacks Aaron Cruden misses New Zealand flight after drinking session, has brilliant excuse
- 2 Kim Kardashian 'nude photos' leaked on 4chan weeks after Jennifer Lawrence scandal
- 3 'F*ck it, I quit': TV reporter Charlo Greene quits live on air in spectacular fashion
- 4 Alicia Keys leaks nude photo 'to create a kinder and more peaceful world'
- 5 Clothes store Joy angers mental health campaigners with Twitter exchange on bipolar disorders
Scotland could still declare independence – even without referendum, says Alex Salmond
Scottish referendum results: Cross-party consensus collapses amid Tory-Labour spat on the 'English question'
Hilary Mantel 'should be investigated by police' over Margaret Thatcher assassination story, says Lord Bell
Scottish independence: David Cameron is becoming the 'George Bush of Britain'
Plebgate MP Andrew Mitchell called officer a 'little s**t', claim court documents 'exposing ex-Chief Whip's 'record of abusing police'
Archbishop of Canterbury admits doubts about existence of God