The former Manchester City frontman is a free agent and hasn’t played a competitive game since July
Ivory Coast international Wilfried Bony has disclosed how a wrong career decision to play in Qatar is partly responsible for his inability to find a new club.
Admittedly, the frontman was included in Ibrahim Kamara’s 23-man squad for the showpiece in Egypt, but it’s come at a great cost, with the former Manchester City striker unable to the get a new club since his release by Swansea in the summer.
“I thought the best way for me to participate in the Africa Cup of Nations was to move, so, in a way, moving was good for me but in another way, it was not great because I think if I’d stayed at Swansea, I’d have a club now, because people would have seen me,” the 31-year-old told The Athletic.
“It can happen. I came back from injury and played for Swansea — seven games — then after, I went to Qatar. I went there because, even though I knew the [standard] was low, I wanted to play regularly, to take the injury out of my mind. I was not doing that at Swansea.”
Be that as it may, the former Vitesse attacker is optimistic he’ll find a club very soon, regardless of what is being said about him behind his back.
“It’s painful (not having a club). It’s something that you love and then you are not able to play,” he confessed.
“People are thinking: ‘Is he fit or not? He went to Qatar to play, blah blah blah.’ You know you are in a bad period when people start to talk like that but this is part of football and our life. I’m really confident in myself. I will stay calm and I know I will get something in the next two weeks.”
Furthermore, Bony opened up about his disappointing time in Manchester, having made a big-money move from Swansea in January 2015, before injuries and illness slowed him down.
“I came back after winning the Cup [Afcon 2015] and my body was kaput — that didn’t help me,” Bony says.
“I tried hard but I was not good. I kept getting injuries — hamstrings, calf — because I was tired. That season [2015/16] was very difficult.
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“The next season, I still couldn’t prepare myself because I got malaria. The team had to go away (to Australia and Vietnam during pre-season) but I had to stay in the UK because I was sick.
“City was a good place but it was the wrong time. It was very difficult. I wanted to do good, I wanted to do more but my body was tired, not able to provide what I would expect. I’d played two or three years without a rest.”
The unattached Bony recently underwent a trial with Ligue 2 side Le Havre in December but was unable to secure a permanent contract with Paul Le Guen’s side.