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No more changes to Nations Cup venues say CAF

28 August 2014, 20:00

Cairo - The Confederation of African Football have ruled out any more venue changes for next week's African Nations Cup qualifiers in the wake of requests by several countries to move matches following the Ebola virus outbreak and stadium violence in Algeria.

CAF had previously ordered Guinea and Sierra Leone to move their qualifiers on the advice of health authorities but said in a statement on Thursday there would be no more changes.

The two west Africa countries are at the epicentre of the Ebola virus outbreak, which has claimed more than 1,500 deaths.

In recent days, Cameroon, Congo, Mali and Tunisia have asked CAF to move matches in which they are involved but their requests have been rejected.

"CAF will reassess the situation in mid-September in order to allow or not these affected countries to receive teams and organise CAF matches and competitions," African football's controlling body said.

The first two rounds of qualifiers will be played on the weekend of Sept. 5-6 and on Sept 10. Guinea are playing their home match in Casablanca, Morocco but Sierra Leone have yet to find a country willing to help them host their game.

Congo expressed concern about traveling next weekend to Nigeria, where there have also been Ebola related deaths, while Cameroon wrote to CAF asking that their scheduled match in the Democratic Republic of Congo on Sept. 6 be moved to a neutral venue.

A separate Ebola outbreak was announced at the weekend in the Congo where a different strain of the virus has been identified.

Mali do not want to go to Algeria, claiming they are concerned for the safety of their players in the north African country where a footballer died last weekend after being struck by an object thrown from the stands after the end of a top flight match.

"It is extremely important that every federation, whose country is affected by the virus, should ensure that their respective delegations travelling abroad can be examined before their departure in order to ensure that no member can transmit Ebola," CAF added in the statement.

"On the other hand, each national association receiving delegations is obliged to communicate all the necessary information delivered by health authorities to ensure the reception of teams and officials from various countries, including those from affected countries, and to proceed, if necessary, to additional checks at arrival points if required."

Also read: Time for Nigeria to host AFCON?

- Reuters


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