Algeria travel restrictions derails Gor plans for CAF game

The Confederation of African Football(CAF) has pushed Gor Mahiaʻs CAF Champions League match against Algeriaʻs CR Belouizdad to 26th December 2020.

The first leg match was initially set for this Wednesday 23rd December but the travel restrictions imposed by the Algerian government made it hard for the record Kenyan defending champions to make it out of the country.

Since the advent of the novel corona virus pandemic, Algeria suspended non-cargo international air and maritime travel as of March 17th 2020. The match officials from Tunisia had however made it to Algeria aboard a chartered plane through Paris.

Under normal circumstances, anyone who wants to travel to Algeria will have to use a connection flight through Doha, Qatar. Club officials were however adamant that even if the team was to reach Doha, leaving Qatar for Algiers, Algeria would still be a tall order as there are no flights. Additionally, the team needs a Qatar visa which they donʻt have.

Gor Mahia, who dispatched Rwandaʻs APR to reach this round, will be looking to break their winless jinx in North Africa as they chase the lucrative group stages. Chairman Ambrose Rachier is optimistic of getting a commercial flight and leave on December 24th.

“The match will now be played on December 26 after CAF’s intervention. We are thankful that they understood that we were genuinely unable to fly to Algeria and pushed the match forward. Algeria only allowed humanitarian flights but we intend to get a commercial flight and leave on December 24,” said Rachier.

CR Belouizdad meanwhile beat Libyaʻs Al Nasr 4-0 on aggregate. The return leg will be played on the weekend of 5th -6th January next year.

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