Man Utd star 'sent off twice' as national team learn of AFCON fate

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The midfielder will be available for Man Utd again but is likely to miss Thursday's trip to Wolves.

Sofyan Amrabat twice saw a red card brandished against him as Morocco were beaten 2-0 by South Africa and eliminated from the Africa Cup of Nations at the last-16 stage on Tuesday night.

Morocco were among the favourites to win AFCON this year, following an excellent World Cup campaign in Qatar in which they became the first team from the continent to reach the semi-finals. They went unbeaten in their group stage this year but were shocked by South Africa in the first knockout round.

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Amrabat's misery was compounded in added-time when he was sent off, not just once but twice. The midfielder was shown a second yellow after bringing down Teboho Mokoena during a counter-attack, but looked set to get away with one amid a VAR check.

Amrabat's second yellow was rescinded by the referee and for a moment he had got lucky. But the Manchester United midfielder was adjudged to have denied a clear goalscoring opportunity and was instead shown a straight red.

Morocco's elimination means that all eight quarter-finalists in this year's AFCON are different from the last edition, the first time in major tournament history that such a scenario has occurred. Amrabat is now expected to return to Manchester, although he is not likely to be ready in time for Thursday's Premier League trip to Wolves.

Amrabat joins Andre Onana in returning earlier than planned from what has been a terrible tournament for the two United players present. Cameroon were also tipped to go far but were beaten 2-0 by Nigeria on Saturday.

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Onana missed Cameroon's opening match after deciding to play for United against Tottenham less than 24 hours beforehand. The 27-year-old made just one appearance in a 3-1 loss to Senegal before being dropped by manager Rigobert Song for games against Gambia and then Nigeria.

Onana returned earlier than Amrabat and is expected to be part of the matchday squad for Thursday's trip to Molineux. He did miss the FA Cup win over Newport County, a game in which fellow summer arrival Altay Bayindir finally made his debut and became the first Turkish player to play for United. Amrabat could return against West Ham on Sunday.

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