Gambians woke up to the shocking news of their country’s soccer team being thrown out of the CAF U-20 championship.
The decision to throw out the country’s U-20 team is published on the CAF website, cafonline.com. According to the site, the Gambia was disqualified by the Organising Committee for the Orange Africa U-20 Championship.
The news came hours after Na Gambia News reported that CAF has been too slow in reaching a decision over the Liberia-Gambia appeal.
The decision follows a protest by Liberia on some players of the Gambia during the first leg on Sunday, 6 April 2014, which Gambia won 1-0.
CAF wrote, “Indeed, Sang Pierre Mendy, Buba Sanneh, Bubacarr Trawally, Saloum Fall and Ali Sowe were all born in 1994 and are not qualified to participate in the competition reserved for players born on or after 1 January 1995, as stated in a circular dated 2 September 2013 sent to all Member Associations of CAF.
“In view of this, Match Number 22 (second leg) Gambia – Liberia scheduled for 25-27 April is canceled, and Liberia has qualified for the next round.”
It would be recalled that hours after losing 1-0 to the young scorpions of The Gambia, the Liberia Football Association filed in an appeal claiming that The Gambia have used five players who are ineligible to play in the qualifiers.
Since then, CAF requested for the passports, national identity cards and license of the said players for verification and possible investigation but what many were expecting to have been an easier task has become a hard task for the continental body.
The Liberian claimed that only players born January 1, 1995 are eligible to play in the qualifiers.
On the contrary, authorities at the Gambia Football Federation state that players born 1994 are eligible to in the qualifiers until they turn 20.
The 2nd Vice President of The Gambia Football Federation, Kebba Touray who was the first to rubbish the Liberian appeal, continued to call on Gambians to remain optimistic because they have not flouted the rules of the competition.
In the letter sent to all CAF affiliated countries, dated September 2, 2013, all associations have been warned that only players born January 1, 1995 are qualified to play in the championship.
CAF media officer, Junior Binyam earlier pointed out that only players born 1995 and above are eligible to play in the competition
Source: Nna Gambia News
I am afraid from a COMMON SENSE stand-point the GFF is correct on this one. The competition is not CAF U-1/1/95. It is CAF U-20. Any player who has NOT REACHED his 20th Birthday on the day that the games start, is eligible to be enrolled for CAF U-20. The idea that 19-year olds cannot play because they were born before 1/1/95 is simply madness. But then again we are all mad in Africa – it must be our beautiful sunshine!
Haha Dida,spot on as usual. It is an embarrassing situation for the Gambia.
A pathetic state of affairs. Gambia football association should have done their home work well. The hopes of young people are dashed again.