CAF has resolved the dispute between Mauritius and São Tomé and Príncipe in favour of the Dodos
Mauritius have confirmed their place in the 2023 Africa Cup of Nations qualifying round and will battle Nigeria’s Super Eagles, among others, for a spot at the next edition of the championship to be hosted by Ivory Coast next year.
São Tomé and Príncipe would feel hard done after they defeated Mauritius 4-3 on aggregate in the preliminary qualifier in March.
But Mauritius protested the victory and filed a report with CAF that their opponents fielded a player who had tested positive for COVID-19. São Tomé & Príncipe disputed this assertion.
CAF has, however, ruled that São Tomé and Príncipe forward Luis Leal, who scored the only goal in the first leg of their play-off, broke the body’s COVID-19 protocols.
The football body, therefore, awarded Mauritius a 3-0 win for that encounter (resulting in a 6-3 aggregate victory) and fined São Tomé and Príncipe $10,000.
With Mauritius securing judgement in their favour, the Dodos will now battle Nigeria’s Super Eagles, Sierra Leone’s Stars, and Guinea-Bissau’s Wild Dogs for one of Group A’s two qualifying tickets.
A busy few weeks for Nigerian football will see the Super Eagles play a couple of friendly matches with Mexico (March 29) and Ecuador (June 03) in preparation for the Afcon qualifiers.
And for the qualifiers, the three-time Afcon winners host Sierra Leone’s Leone Stars on June 9 before making the trip to Mauritius to face the Dodos four days later.