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Musa Barrow to feature as 1st Gambian at UEFA Champions league round of 16

Dec 20, 2019, 2:14 PM

EUFA Champions League will continue to have Gambian interests and following when the prestigious tournament resumes in February 2020.

 Gambian international and Atalanta Forward Musa Barrow would enter the history books for the launch of a national record as the first ever Gambian to have reached the European elite club competition second round.

It was until before then that only three other Gambians succeeded to have attained appearances in the world’s most watched tourney’s group stage namely Jatto Ceesay, Seyfo Solley and Momodou Ceesay (Zico).

 Barrow’s Atalanta will host Valencia in the first- leg tie of the knock-out phase on 19February 2020 in Italy.

The former Hawks striker was declared surplus due to his on and off pitch performances and was nearly exit bound the previous season having failed to come out of the shadow of on-form Colombian teammate Zapata.

Numerous clubs were linked with his signing on loan basis beginning with other outfits in the Serie A to teams in the Bundesliga and the English Premier League.

Belgian serial champions Anderlecht, were the starlet’s most willing destination but thanks to the Serie giants Atalanta that penned the services of the Gambian’s availability in the transfer window.

 Some reports earlier intimated that Barrow would have joined Anderlecht.

Finishing third in the Serie A as bronze winner guaranteed automatic qualification to the Champions League. Head Coach Gasperini felt he needed to reinforce his squad and one area that required cementing in his thinking was the attack force.

 Signing a more experienced forward to put star striker Zapata on his A game was one thing he was ardent ensuing see light of day.

He however trusted Barrow as backup through their UEFA Champions League journey, an undertaking that has proven worthwhile.

Barrow got trusted back into the fold and had his name included in his team’s Champions League squad. He has has not looked back since then, getting some minutes under his belt in his side’s Fixture against Dinamo Zagreb.

His game time has improved in recent games and so are his minutes per game expected next year when the tournament resumes for the Quarter Finals stage.

Barrow’s appearance at the world stage is to the delight of Scorpions Coach Tom Saintfiet been monitoring one of his trusted forwards while keeping close eyes on Gambian players across Europe.

 Team-mate Ebrima Colley has also made his debut for the Atalanta last week although not quite sure of making it to the Champions League knock-out phase.  Source-GFF