Empire News Africa

African Entertainment News Online…

CHAN defenders Morocco could also be out of event after row with Algeria

Spread the love

Morocco’s hopes of defending their African Nations Championship (CHAN) could possibly be dashed after an extended wait at Rabat Airport ended with out their aircraft taking off.

The 2021 winners had withdrawn from the event on Thursday after the Algerian authorities apparently rejected its request for the group to fly there instantly on Morocco’s nationwide airline. However organisers remained hopeful.

President of the Royal Moroccan Soccer Federation (FRMF), Faouzi Lekjaa, mentioned on Friday: “What we’re experiencing immediately is that the Moroccan nationwide group, which is current proper now within the ready room of the airport, is a pity. 

“Younger individuals have labored for years and ready for this championship for months, and ready on all sides to take part within the championship and to defend the title as nicely.”

Algeria severed diplomatic ties with Morocco in 2021, in a dispute over the Western Sahara, a territory annexed by Morocco in 1975. The row meant all direct flights between the 2 nations have been suspended.

However the CHAN champions nonetheless deliberate to play within the soccer event. 

On Friday morning in Rabat, gamers, soccer affiliation delegation, journalists, representatives have been all able to board the flight from Rabat-Sale airport with the hope that Algeria would lastly authorise the journey. Nevertheless,  the approval by no means got here from Algiers. 

Confederation of African Soccer president, Patrice Motsepe, mentioned: “I can inform you that there was an enormous quantity of pleasure in regards to the performances of Morocco in all the 54 nations in Africa.

“So, we carry on. We have now to use our thoughts as we won’t have this case, we won’t have this case the place now we have these issues.”

The CHAN kicked off on Friday with hosts Algeria beating Libya one nil.

The Atlas Lions have been scheduled to play their opening match on Sunday towards Sudan and it stays unclear how their withdrawal will have an effect on the format of the competitors and whether or not Morocco will face any type of punishment for pulling out.