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Friday, May 20, 2022

WHERE SHOULD GAMBIA PLAY AFCON QUALIFIERS?

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With no visible repair works at the Independence Stadium (banned by Caf) it is highly likely that Gambia’s home matches in Afcon 2023 qualifiers will be played abroad.

The country eliminated Chad in the preliminaries that Gambia took to Morocco securing a place in the group stages which starts in June with two fixtures, one at home and the other one away. There would be another two rounds of matches in September and then March next year.

With the draw now slated for April 19, in about a week’s time, people are wondering whether the fans would be able to see the national team in action here at home during the qualifiers.

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 Though the Gambia Football Federation often prefers Morocco for camping and home matches (tapping from a long-standing cooperation) but there are increasing loud voices that Senegal will be the right place for those matches if the stadium is not available by then.

‚ÄúThere will be no sense in taking the home matches to Morocco when it is possible in Dakar where Gambians can travel to watch,” Saikou Bah, a football administrator said. He added that the GFF should not deprive Gambians of the joy of watching the national team in action by taking the matches to Morocco no matter what.  The Standard called up a GFF official who said the issue of the stadium refurbishment ins the hands of government and when the time comes for the Afcon matches, the GFF will consult and take the appropriate decision depending on what is on the ground.

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