Moroccan side awarded soccer draw after kit confiscation by Algeria | Soccer News

Renaissance Belkan defeated USM Algiers 3-0 in the CAF African Confederation Cup after Algerian customs confiscated the visiting team’s uniforms.

Moroccan club Renaissance Belkan defeated hosts USM Algiers (USMA) 3-0 in the first leg of the African Confederation Cup semi-finals, despite refusing to play because their jerseys were confiscated by Algerian customs. won.

The Confederation of African Football (CAF) announced on Thursday that Sunday’s second leg in Morocco will go ahead as scheduled.

CAF added that defending champion USMA will face further sanctions.

Berkan traveled to the Algiers stadium for the first leg last Sunday, but did not leave the changing room at kick-off time because his kit was confiscated by Algerian customs when he arrived two days earlier.

On the chest of their shirts is a small map of Morocco, including the disputed region of Western Sahara, the center of frosty relations between the North African neighbors.

The Moroccan club has worn the motif throughout this season’s Confederation Cup campaign, but Algerian commentators have called it provocative and it has been put in place under rules banning displays of a political nature on soccer uniforms. He said he disagreed.

The incident, which left Moroccans stranded at Algiers’ airport for several hours, was not the first time a diplomatic spat spilled over into the sporting arena.

Last year, Morocco refused to compete in the African Nations Championship in Algeria after the host country refused to fly directly on a chartered plane.

The border between Algeria and Morocco will be closed and Moroccan aircraft will be prohibited from entering Algerian airspace from August 2021, after Algeria severed ties with Rabat due to what it called “hostile acts” against Algeria. ing.

Tensions over Western Sahara have soured relations since Morocco annexed Western Sahara after Spain withdrew in 1975.

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