Assistant head coach Billy Reid believes the African Cup of Nations is a great stage for Yves Bissouma to showcase his talent.
Bissouma has already helped Mali reach the knockout stages after returning to his country’s squad after a three-year absence for the tournament in Cameroon.
After coming on as a second-half substitute in their 1-0 win over Tunisia in their group-stage opener, the 25-year-old played in the 1-1 draw against Gambia and last Thursday’s 2-0 victory over Mauritania which secured their place in the round of 16.
Mali take on Equatorial Guinea in Limbe today for the right to face the hosts Cameroon or Gambia in Saturday’s quarter-final.
“First of all I am delighted after three years he is now playing for his nation,” said Reid.
“To play in the Africa Cup of Nations is a big, big thing for all the African players. He’s a super player, he should be there and it was great to watch him and his country qualify for the last 16.”
Bissouma has been instrumental for Albion this season, and made his 100th Premier League appearance before heading to Africa.
“He’s a great lad, Yves, I’ve got a lot of time for him,” added Reid. “We’ll all be interested in how they get on and hopefully he can help Mali do well in the rest of the tournament.”