Hibs boss Collins defied as Benji is called up to Morocco squad

Last updated : 13 November 2007 By Steve Forbes

Hibs boss John Collins has today revealed that star striker Abdessalam Benjelloun has been called up to the Moroccan Olympic squad to face Rwanda, despite his pleads for the forward to be left out.

Collins faxed the Moroccan FA as well as manager Fathi Jamal, but it seems his pleads have fallen on deaf ears.

The Hibees gaffer was fuming when Benji was called up to face
Cameroon last month, despite not having played first team football for six weeks.

22-year-old Benjelloun had missed a lot of first team action due to a combination of the effects of the Muslim holy month of Ramadan and a troublesome knee injury.

The Moroccan doctors strapped his knee heavily and played the forward against
Cameroon, only for him to aggravate the injury.

Benjelloun is now injury free, but Collins is adamant that the player is not fit enough and is disappointed that Jamal has ignored his concerns and called him up anyway.

The Hibs boss said:

"Benji is away, they always insist he goes so they can check him out for themselves. Our fax went off last week but I would imagine he will be involved as they'll have to go flat out to win.

"The injury has cleared up, he is fine but I'd rather he had stayed here where we could have worked on his fitness and let him play in another reserve game rather than an international match."

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