Gambia Alleges Maltreatment by Benin in CAF U-20 Exit
Gambia feels grossly maltreated by opponents Benin in the Young Scorpions’ defeat in Cotonou.
Recently feted kings of West Africa Football Union Nations Cup staged in Liberia, the Young Scorpions made a shock exit in the Africa U-20 qualifiers.
The first-leg held May 14th in Banjul ended 2-1 in Gambia’s favor but a week on, were found making the exit courtesy of a reverse fixture which saw Benin regroup and win 2-0 (3-2 on aggregate).
However, Gambia’s advance party football delegation are left umbraged by events leading to yesterday’s afternoon game in Contonou, alleging they were ghastly treated by their hosts.
Taking to social media to vent spleen, the West Africa nation’s erstwhile defense chief and member of the team’s delegation, Lang Tombong Tamba, appeared to blame the Scorpions’ exit to the circle ill-treatments the outfit allegedly endured moments before the match.
According to Lang, Gambian players were denied access to the pitch and instead used the beach as makeshift venue for free-up.
Tombong claims the referee ‘played his part’ in Sunday’s loss and went on to cite how at one point the driver designated to transport Gambia’s team bus, abandoned the players bound for training for forty-minutes.
He wrote on his timeline: [perfectpullquote align=”full” cite=”” link=”” color=”” class=”” size=””]“The match is over and we (Gambia) lost 2 goals to 0. The boys played a better game amidst all kind of harassment and intimidation. The Friday the team arrived they were refused to use the pitch. They did the free up at the beach. Yesterday, we were to use the pitch from 4pm to 5pm. By 3:30pm the boys came down and the driver abandoned the bus and never returned until after 40 minutes. The bus couldn’t start due to battery problem. Arriving late at the pitch due to the above factors, we were not allowed to complete our training. The referee also played his part. I wished you had the chance to watch the game. Let’s accept the defeat, the boys have done their best. This is how Allah has decided.”[/perfectpullquote]
The exit has left a bitter taste to the mouth leaving fans in Banjul exasperated at the sudden dashing of optimism following a triumphant campaign in Monrovia.