The selection of Morocco, traveling to Guinea for the second day of qualifying for the 2022 World Cup, finds itself stranded in Conakry, caught in the middle of an attempted coup. An armed group has stormed since Sunday morning the palace of President Alpha Condé, re-elected in 2020.
The players and staff are “safe and are currently in a hotel a bit far from the area of tension,” an official of the Royal Moroccan Football Federation (FRMF), Mohamed Makrouf, told AFP. Nevertheless, everyone is worried, obviously. “We hear gunshots (…). It’s been shooting since 10:00 this morning, says coach Vahid Halilhodzic, joined by L’Equipe. I saw soldiers running across the street. We do not know. The players are not reassured, the concern is there, for sure. “
Waiting for authorization to go to the airport
The Moroccan authorities were at the end of the day working to evacuate the team. “A plane is already at the airport for the operation,” said Mohamed Makrouf, but the selection has not yet been authorized to leave his hotel.
For months, this West African country among the poorest in the world despite considerable mineral and hydrological resources has been in the grip of a deep political and economic crisis, aggravated by the Covid-19 pandemic. Regarding the match, the Moroccan Football Federation is in contact with FIFA to find out if it will be postponed, canceled or ultimately played in Morocco.