The affair went around the world. The day before their CAN 2021 qualifying match against Gambia, Gabon’s players were stranded at the airport by the Gambian authorities and they had to sleep there, on the floor. Following the Panthères’ defeat (1-2) on Monday, the president of the Gabonese Football Federation (Fegafoot), Pierre-Alain Mounguengui, confirmed that he had contacted the African Football Confederation (CAF). Recall that the authority had already announced before the match that it is going investigate this incident.
«In sport, we are adversaries, not enemies. But the Gambian Federation welcomed us as enemies! She sent a senior officer of the Gambian army to come and terrorize and traumatize the players of the national team, who remained at the airport under the maneuvers of this general from 10:45 p.m. to 6:30 a.m. The hotel being located 45 minutes from the airport, our team arrived there around 7:30 am, for a match that was to be played at 4:00 pm (local, editor’s note)“, Denounced the leader on Wednesday at a press conference.
Gabon relies on CAF
The Gabonese is convinced that The Gambia acted knowingly to weaken the Panthers. “The Gambia maneuver paid off. Our players were blocked, they were prevented from sleeping. (…) Everyone’s organization requires a rest, because football is a sport that is played with great intensity. If an athlete dope, wins (and gets caught), they are sanctioned. This example is clear: The Gambia’s maneuvers, which consisted in exhausting Gabonese players by depriving them of rest, must be studied very closely by CAF. There is no more equity (…) when the adversary cannot sleep! A Gambian army officer came to morally torture the Gabonese players. This kind of leader should not be a sports leaderMounguengui plagued.
The boss of Fegafoot then called on CAF: “Will CAF allow this de facto situation to prosper? We have taken steps to ensure that our complaint is on the CAF table on time.“Suffice to say that the decision of the Pan-African authority is awaited with great impatience in this case …