Ayews' return not behind Asamoah's Ghana absence - Konadu

Ghana's Kwadwo Asamoah before his self-imposed international exile Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images

The Ayew brothers' return to the Ghana squad is not the reason for Kwadwo Asamoah's withdrawal from the team, according to Black Stars assistant coach Maxwell Konadu.

The Internazionale man's absence from Sunday's Africa Cup of Nations qualifier against Ethiopia on Sunday was confirmed by the Ghana FA in a statement on Monday.

According to Konadu, the player's injury is legitimate, and is nothing to do with the return of some of the nation's other big names - Andre and Jordan Ayew, who are set to return to the international fold for the first time since September 2017.

"It's never true that Kwadwo Asamoah faked his injury," Konadu told Otec FM [as per Goal]. "He didn't also pull out of the game against Ethiopia because the Ayew brothers are returning to the team.

"In fact, there's no problem between those players."

According to the statement by the Ghana FA, Asamoah has withdrawn due to a swollen knee picked up in Sunday's 4-1 Serie A defeat by Atalanta.

"The invitations ahead of this game were sent to players and their respective clubs a fortnight ago so Asamoah was aware that Ayew brothers are returning," Konadu reasoned.

"If indeed he doesn't want to play with them, why didn't he reject the call-up at that time? I don't think those reports are accurate.

"Asamoah is indeed injured and he has spoken to us about it, so we cannot relate it to any feud with another player," he concluded. "I have to respect his privacy or else I would've given out the details of his injury to the public."

Asamoah's absence comes only two months after he returned to the squad following a four-year self-imposed international exile.

After two matches, Ghana find themselves third in AFCON qualifying Group F, having taken three points so far, although they've played two games fewer than leaders Kenya and second-placed Ethiopia.

Their October double-header against Sierra Leone was cancelled due to the latter's suspension by FIFA after government interference to deal with alleged corruption in the SLFA.