September 27 – Morocco have reportedly moved into pole position to take over from Kenya as hosts of the 2018 African Nations Championship (CHAN), the regional tournament for domestically based players.
“The kingdom has all the necessary infrastructure for this event which requires no more than four stadiums,” a source close to the Royal Moroccan Football Federation (FRMF) was quoted as saying shortly after Kenya was stripped of hosting rights by the Confederation of African Football (CAF).
South Africa and Ivory Coast are also apparently on standby but Morocco has considerable clout within CAF circles. Moroccan Foootball Federation president Fouzi Lekjaa is a member of the CAF inner circle and was a strong supporter of new CAF president Ahmad Ahmad.
Angola, Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Congo, Equatorial Guinea, Guinea, Ivory Coast, Libya, Mauritania, Morocco, Namibia, Nigeria, Sudan, Uganda and Zambia have all qualified for the competition. Kenya completed the line-up as the host nation – a position they now forfeit.
CAF are to organise a fresh bidding campaign and it would appear the only factor stopping Morocco being named as Kenya’s replacement as hosts is whether the country decides instead to go for the far more prestigious African Cup of Nations in 2019 should Cameroon be stripped of hosting rights for that tournament.
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