Manchester City striker Emmanuel Adebayor escaped unharmed after a bus carrying the Togo national team came under attack from gunfire in Angola.

The Sparrow Hawks are in the country ahead of the African Nations Cup, which gets under way on Sunday.

According to reports, at least three Togo players and the bus driver suffered injuries during the attack.

A statement posted on City’s official website, www.mcfc.co.uk, this evening read: “Manchester City can confirm that striker Emmanuel Adebayor is uninjured after this afternoon’s attack on the Togo team bus in Angola.

Romanian side FC Vaslui confirmed their defender Serge Akakpo, who joined the club from French side Auxerre last year, was shot and badly injured in the attack.

The club said, though, the 22-year-old was out of danger after being treated by doctors.

A statement on the club’s website, www.vasluifc.ro, read: “Badly injured in an ambush in Angola, Serge Akakpo is now out of danger.

“Akakpo was struck by two bullets in the attack and has lost much blood. His condition was stabilised by doctors.

Togo are scheduled to begin their cup campaign against Ghana on Monday, but their participation in the tournament now looks in serious doubt.

Togo and Nantes striker Thomas Dossevi told French radio station RMC: “I’m okay but several players are in a bad state.

“We are still at hospital. We were machine-gunned like dogs and had to remain hidden under our seats for around 20 minutes to avoid the bullets.”

Midfielder Alaixys Romao admits the players feared the worst and thinks Togo are now likely to pull out of the tournament.

“We’re not thinking yet of what could happen,” said Romao, who plays his club football for Grenoble.

“But it’s true that no-one wants to play.

“We’re not capable of it.

“We’re thinking first of all about the health of our injured because there was a lot of blood on the ground.

“For the moment there is not much news because they have been taken to different hospitals.

Aston Villa confirmed that their 26-year-old midfielder Moustapha Salifou was „shaken but okay” following the attack.

Midfielder Richmond Forson believes the number of injuries could have been much worse had the gunmen not originally fired on the wrong bus.

“It was the bus carrying our baggage which was in front of us which they fired on the most,” he told Canal Plus. “They thought we were in the bus in front.

“Fortunately for us. That’s what saved us.

“Then they fired on our driver and those who were in front. The windscreen was shattered by the first bullets.

Dossevi later gave more details about the attack.

He added: “We had just crossed the border five minutes before, we were surrounded by police buses, one in front of us another behind.

“Everything was fine and then there was a powerful burst of gunfire.

“Everyone threw themselves under the seats and tried to protect themselves but some couldn’t escape the bullets.

“It lasted a good 15 minutes, the police fired back but really, it was hard to handle and it still is now. I’m shocked.

“When we got off the bus we were asking ourselves why us and not others? We were asking ourselves what had happened, we were crying and thanking God.”

Adebayor was interviewed prior to his departure for the tournament and asked whether he had any reservations about playing in the politically unstable Cabinda region of Angola, and the former Arsenal forward said: „We were born in Africa so we know what it’s about. Some people might be afraid which is normal, I can understand that. But I’m going back to Africa, to one of the countries on my continent, and I’m prepared for Cabinda. I will enjoy myself.

“African nations are getting better and better. We can’t be like France, England or America tomorrow. Angola had a big, big war but today everybody is getting along better. They have good organisation and we hope everyone will enjoy it and come back safely.”

Read the article on Irish Examiner

Adebayor unharmed after attack

Manchester City striker Emmanuel Adebayor escaped unharmed after a bus carrying the Togo national team came under attack from gunfire in Angola.

The Sparrow Hawks are in the country ahead of the African Nations Cup, which gets under way on Sunday.

According to reports, at least three Togo players and the bus driver suffered injuries during the attack.

A statement posted on City’s official website, www.mcfc.co.uk, this evening read: “Manchester City can confirm that striker Emmanuel Adebayor is uninjured after this afternoon’s attack on the Togo team bus in Angola.

Romanian side FC Vaslui confirmed their defender Serge Akakpo, who joined the club from French side Auxerre last year, was shot and badly injured in the attack.

The club said, though, the 22-year-old was out of danger after being treated by doctors.

A statement on the club’s website, www.vasluifc.ro, read: “Badly injured in an ambush in Angola, Serge Akakpo is now out of danger.

“Akakpo was struck by two bullets in the attack and has lost much blood. His condition was stabilised by doctors.

Togo are scheduled to begin their cup campaign against Ghana on Monday, but their participation in the tournament now looks in serious doubt.

Togo and Nantes striker Thomas Dossevi told French radio station RMC: “I’m okay but several players are in a bad state.

“We are still at hospital. We were machine-gunned like dogs and had to remain hidden under our seats for around 20 minutes to avoid the bullets.”

Midfielder Alaixys Romao admits the players feared the worst and thinks Togo are now likely to pull out of the tournament.

“We’re not thinking yet of what could happen,” said Romao, who plays his club football for Grenoble.

“But it’s true that no-one wants to play.

“We’re not capable of it.

“We’re thinking first of all about the health of our injured because there was a lot of blood on the ground.

“For the moment there is not much news because they have been taken to different hospitals.

Aston Villa confirmed that their 26-year-old midfielder Moustapha Salifou was „shaken but okay” following the attack.

Midfielder Richmond Forson believes the number of injuries could have been much worse had the gunmen not originally fired on the wrong bus.

“It was the bus carrying our baggage which was in front of us which they fired on the most,” he told Canal Plus. “They thought we were in the bus in front.

“Fortunately for us. That’s what saved us.

“Then they fired on our driver and those who were in front. The windscreen was shattered by the first bullets.

Dossevi later gave more details about the attack.

He added: “We had just crossed the border five minutes before, we were surrounded by police buses, one in front of us another behind.

“Everything was fine and then there was a powerful burst of gunfire.

“Everyone threw themselves under the seats and tried to protect themselves but some couldn’t escape the bullets.

“It lasted a good 15 minutes, the police fired back but really, it was hard to handle and it still is now. I’m shocked.

“When we got off the bus we were asking ourselves why us and not others? We were asking ourselves what had happened, we were crying and thanking God.”

Adebayor was interviewed prior to his departure for the tournament and asked whether he had any reservations about playing in the politically unstable Cabinda region of Angola, and the former Arsenal forward said: „We were born in Africa so we know what it’s about. Some people might be afraid which is normal, I can understand that. But I’m going back to Africa, to one of the countries on my continent, and I’m prepared for Cabinda. I will enjoy myself.

“African nations are getting better and better. We can’t be like France, England or America tomorrow. Angola had a big, big war but today everybody is getting along better. They have good organisation and we hope everyone will enjoy it and come back safely.”

Read the article on Irish Examiner

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