African Cup organizers change venues for 3 knockout games
YAOUNDE, Cameroon (AP) — African Cup of Nations organizers announced Wednesday that they were changing the venues for two quarterfinal games and one of the semifinals.
One of the quarterfinals scheduled for Sunday was moved from the Olembe Stadium in Yaounde across town to the Ahmadou Ahidjo Stadium after eight people were killed in a crush outside the Olembe during the round-of-16 game between host Cameroon and Comoros on Monday. A total of 38 others were injured and seven of them were in serious condition in the hospital.
The Confederation of African Football had already indicated it would move that game away from the Olembe.
But CAF also said it was moving another quarterfinal and a semifinal from the Japoma Stadium in Douala to Ahmadou Ahidjo Stadium.
It gave no reason for moving those two games but there have been complaints from teams over the state of the field in Douala.
CAF didn’t announce a decision on the other semifinal, which is scheduled to take place at the Olembe Stadium. It said it would depend on the findings of an investigation into the deadly stampede, which has been blamed on security failings at the stadium. CAF said it needed to review that report before the semifinal could go ahead at the Olembe next Thursday. The Olembe’s hosting of the African Cup final on Feb. 6 is also in doubt and will depend on the results of the investigation.
CAF said it also requires “the assurance and guarantee that appropriate and adequate interventions and measures have been implemented to ensure that a similar incident will not occur at the Olembe Stadium.”
More AP soccer: https://apnews.com/hub/soccer and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports