Ex-Arsenal striker, Benik Afobe, has pulled out of the Africa Cup of Nations ahead of Bournemouth’s clash against his former team.

The Cherries play host to Arsenal on 3 January and, since the 23-year-old striker scored during their last Premier League match against Swansea, Eddie Howe’s side will be pleased to have him available to face his former club.

Afobe originally started his international career with England, playing right up until an under-21 level with the Young Lions. The striker chose to change allegiance to Democratic Republic of Congo but has now declined the invitation to travel with his country to the Africa Cup of Nations in favour of staying with Bournemouth and helping them.

“Afobe has forfeited from the tournament,” said media officer, Gerard-Desire Angengwa.

No official reason was given.

Benik Afobe
SWANSEA, WALES – DECEMBER 31: Benik Afobe of AFC Bournemouth celebrates scoring the opening goal during the Premier League match between Swansea City and AFC Bournemouth at Liberty Stadium on December 31, 2016 in Swansea, Wales. (Photo by Jordan Mansfield/Getty Images)

Afobe may have only scored two Premier League goals this season but injuries have hampered his playing time and, considering he scored against the Swans on New Year’s Eve during his team’s 3-0 win, I’d imagine he could get a start against Arsenal. The club he was at since he was a boy.