Sunday, November 18, 2007


image Watford midfielder Al Bangura is facing a Home Office hearing which could mean he has to leave the country.

The Sierra Leone-born midfielder - who is attracted interest from Arsenal in the past year - arrived in Britain as an asylum seeker.

He was spotted by Watford playing in a local park and was soon accelerating through their youth set-up before making his debut as a 17-year-old in 2005.

19-year-old Bagura, though, is now in danger of being deported back to Sierra Leone after the Home Office appealed a ruling which cleared him to stay.

Now Bangura is forced to go through more hearings before learning his fate, although his boss Aidy Boothroyd is fully behind his young midfielder.

Bangura's advisor and legal guardian Tony Finnigan remains hopeful that the player's future will soon be resolved.

"We have had two hearings and will go back for another in the coming weeks," Finnigan told Sky Sports.

"We cannot believe this is even happening. He is not reliant on the state, he is not asking them for anything and he pays his taxes and at a 40 per cent rate!

"We are optimistic as on the merits of the case he will stay, but you can never guarantee it.

"Watford are totally in support of Al, they know it would take them millions to replace him.

"We are just hopeful that common-sense will prevail - he fled Sierra Leone with his life in danger and he should not be forced to return."

Bangura is currently sidelined with a broken arm but is set to return to action in the coming weeks.

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