"depriving the national team of participating in CHAN is a very deplorable act"

The president of the Royal Moroccan Football Federation (FRMF), Fouzi Lekjaa, assured Friday that depriving the Moroccan team of taking part in the African Nations Championship (CHAN) for local players, organized in Algeria, is ” a very deplorable act”.

“It is truly deplorable to deprive young players who have prepared for a month of participating in this African sports competition”, declared Lekjaa to the press, on the sidelines of the reception of the president of the International Football Federation (FIFA), Gianni Infantino and the president of the African Confederation (CAF), Patrice Motsepe, who arrived Friday at the airport of Rabat- Salé to attend the draw ceremony for the Club World Cup, scheduled for February 1-11 in Morocco. The Moroccan football team, double champion of the CHAN title, arrived Friday morning at Rabat-Salé airport in anticipation of flying to Constantine to play this tournament, explained Lekjaa.

In a press release made public on Thursday, the FRMF indicated that the Moroccan selection was unable to travel to Constantine in Algeria to compete in the 7th edition of CHAN and defend its title, insofar as the final authorization of his flight Royal Air Maroc (RAM), official carrier of the Moroccan football teams, from Rabat to Constantine has not been confirmed.

Following its request for authorization of a RAM flight from Rabat to Constantine, the FRMF was informed on December 22, 2022 by CAF, as the body in charge of the organization of CHAN 2022, that a authorization in principle had been obtained, notes the same source.

On the basis of this authorization in principle, the FRMF communicated the details of the plan and the coordinates of the flights of the Moroccan selection in order to obtain the final authorization for the RAM flight from Rabat to Constantine and continued the preparation of the trip and the participation of the Moroccan selection in CHAN, in particular the preparation camp at the Mohammed VI Football Complex in Salé from January 6 to 10, during which two friendly matches against Ethiopia were played, the statement added.

While the trip of the Moroccan selection from Rabat to Constantine is organized by the FRMF and the kick-off of the CHAN is scheduled for January 13, the FRMF “Notes with regret that the obtaining of the final authorization for the RAM flight from Rabat to Constantine has unfortunately still not been confirmed by CAF”the statement concludes.

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