Keeper Riffi Mandanda dropped from DR Congo squad

By Mohamed Fajah BarrieBBC Sport, Sierra Leone
DR Congo's Riffi Mandanda in action
DR Congo's Riffi Mandanda will have to wait to play international football and emulate his brothers Parfait and Steve

Uncapped goalkeeper Riffi Mandanda has been dropped from DR Congo's squad for their upcoming 2021 Africa Cup of Nations qualifiers.

The Leopards are set to face Gabon and The Gambia in their opening Group D qualifiers later this month.

The 27-year-old Boulogne player was hoping to become the third of four goalkeeping brothers to play international football after he was included in a provisional squad.

DR Congo coach Christian N'sengi Biembe has downsized his list to 25 and has given no official for his decision to drop Riffi, who has previously featured for the DR Congo under-21 national team.

Riffi's eldest brother Steve, 34, is captain of French club Marseille and has 30 caps for France and was part of the 2018 World Cup winning squad.

While the 30-year-old Belgium-based Parfait who has won 17 caps for DR Congo and 21-year-old Over currently on loan at French third-tier side US Creteil-Lusitanos from Bordeaux.

Over has already been part of a DR Congo squad when he was part an under-23 squad that played Morocco in March.

Three new call-ups also miss out; Netherlands-based forward Jonathan Okita, midfielder Nil De Pauw who plays in Turkey and has represented Belgium at youth levels as well as Belgium based goalkeeper Enzo Alberto.

The other two players dropped are former Chelsea midfielder Gael Kakuta, who has featured in 11 of Amiens' 12 French Ligue 1 matches so far this season, and defender Dongo Luete of local side AS Vita club.

Defender Glody Ngonda Muzinga who plays for French ligue 1 outfit Dijon is the latest player to be drafted into the squad which will host Gabon at home on November 14 and lock horns with The Gambia in Banjul four days later.

DR Congo revised squad:

Goalkeepers: Joel Kiassumbua (Servette, Switzerland), Jackson Lunaga (AS Vita Club), Timothy Bruce Fayulu (FC Sion, France)

Defenders: Mukoko Amale (DC Motema Pembe), Jordan Ikoko (Ludogorets, Bulgaria), Christian Luiyndama (Galatasaray, Turkey), Marcel Tisserand (Wolfsburg, Germany), Chancel Mbemba (FC Porto, Portugal), Arthur Masuaku (West Ham United, England), Fabrice Nsakala (Alanyaspor, Turkey), Wilfred Moke (MKE Ankaragucu, Turkey), Glody Ngonda Muzinga (Dijon, France)

Midfielders: Giannelli Imbula (Lecce, Italy), Samuel Moutoussamy (Nantes, France), Paul-Jose Mpoku (Standard Liege, Belgium), Neeskens Kebano (Fulham, England), Chadrac Akolo (Amiens FC, France)

Forwards: Jordan Botaka (Saint Truiden, Belgium), Yannick Bolasie (Sporting Lisbon, Portugal), Dieumerci Ndongala (Genk, Belgium), Jody Lukoki (Ludogorets, Bulgaria), Cedric Bakambu (Beijing Guoan, China), Jackson Muleka (TP Mazembe, DR Congo), Nelson Balongo (Sint-Truiden, Belgium), Jonathan Bolingi (AS Eupen, Belgium)