FILE - Cameroon soccer legend Roger Milla during the 1 Goal Campaign held at Wanderes Club in Johannnesburg. Photo: Itumeleng English
FILE - Cameroon soccer legend Roger Milla during the 1 Goal Campaign held at Wanderes Club in Johannnesburg. Photo: Itumeleng English

Cameroon football legend Roger Milla castigate North African powerhouses Egypt and Morocco

By Herman Gibbs Time of article published Jan 9, 2022

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Cape Town — Cameroon football legend Roger Milla has launched a scathing attack on North African countries Egypt and Morocco for supporting moves to postpone the 2021 Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) which kick off in Cameroon on Sunday.

Milla, who at the age of 42 famously owned the record for being the oldest player to score a goal in a (1994) World Cup finals match, was speaking on the French television network TV5 Monde. He was speaking about Fifa-driven attempts last month to postpone the Africa Cup of Nations.

Fifa President Gianni Infantino, backed by several European countries, spoke openly about the need to postpone the tournaments, presumably because of health reasons. Following the rapid spread of the new Omicron variant, there was a continuous rise of Covid-19 around the world.

There are more than 40 Premier League players in action in Cameroon. Many European clubs will be without their African players for up to a month.

Football’s governing body Fifa is also faced with the Fifa Club World Cup problem. It is scheduled to start on February 3. Egypt giants Al Ahly, have several players in Egypt's Afcon team, and they are fixtured to play before there in the United Arab Emirates before the Africa Cup of Nations ends in Cameroon.

Milla took exception to North African countries such as Egypt and Morocco for supporting the call to postpone AFCON in Cameroon. Milla, and Samuel Eto'o, are the most famous players Cameroon have produced.

Egypt and Morocco count among the most influential countries in the Confederation of African Football. Their support cast doubts around the event, and Milla was angry about their stance, which showed divisions in the continent's governing body.

“The supporters of the Fifa programme are the nations of North Africa because they always spoil things! They always cause chaos,” Milla said on television. “Sorry, Morocco or Egypt or whatever, I say to them here as a brother. This is not normal.

"If they are not Africans, let them leave the continent and play in Europe or Asia. Do not cause chaos on the African continent.

“They have always grown up on the African continent. We accepted them. They were successful, so today they have no reason to speak ill of other countries in Africa. This is not normal."

Egyptian club African Champions League winners Al Ahly have already complained to both Fifa and CAF about the clash of the Club World Cup in the United Arab Emirates in February.

@Herman_Gibbs

IOL Sport

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