The Championship of African Nations has been held a blow as Ghana’s group opponents and defending champions, Morocco has pulled out of the tournament only a day to kick off.
Morocco announced its withdrawal from the CHAN on Thursday blaming the host Algeria, for blocking Moroccan flights in its airspace.
“The Moroccan national team is unable to reach the Algerian city of Constantine because permission for their flight with Royal Air Maroc, the team’s official transporter, has not been confirmed,” Royal Moroccan Football Federation said in a statement.
In September 2021 a month after cutting diplomatic ties with it’s rival, Algeria restricted it’s airspace to all Moroccan planes accusing it of “hostile conducts”.
That was the most recent escalation in a protracted conflict that dates back to 1994.
As a result of this, Ghana’s group has been cut down from four to three teams Madagascar, Sudan and Ghana. The Black Galaxies however have arrived in Constantine ahead of their opening fixture against Madagascar on Sunday.
CHAN 2023 kicks off tomorrow with a North Derby between host nation Algeria and Lybia at the Nelson Mandela Stadium at 19:00hrs GMT.
Story by: Rashad Usman Sinah | Unvers Sports | Univers.ug.edu.gh