A penalty controversy has rocked West African Nations Cup (WAFU) drawing the attention of many to West African football.
The discord sees Gambian Football Federation threaten to pull out of subsequent WAFU Championship over controversial Ghana penalty they suffered to Ghana in the opener of the ongoing championship in Cape Coast, Ghana.
The controversy emanated from Burkinabe referee’s so called poor judgment when a Thomas Abbey strike seemingly struck the upper arm of a Gambian defender.
With Defender Vincent Atinga converting the kick to prevent the match from traveling to penalty shootouts, Gambia rose in protest of the referee’s judgment. Having converted the penalty, Ghana qualifies to the group stage of the competition at the expense of Gambia.
However, the decision by the referee left the Gambian players and officials disappointed after the game.
His decision was greeted with divided commentary among the Ghanaian media with a section applauding Ouadraogo for the decision while the other lashed him for killing the dream of the young Gambian side
The Gambian Football Federation in a statement has condemned the Burkinabe referee for the controversial decision that saw them out of the competition.
The body has threatened to pull out of the WAFU Championship if no disciplinary actions are taken against Ouadraogo’s actions.
Also contained in the statement by the Gambian Football Federation is a lamentation as well as a reminder that this is the second time such a false penalty reward has deprived the country’s team of an opportunity of moving to the next stage.
Considering the fact that this is the second consecutive time we were robbed in broad daylight in the WAFU competition, the GFF therefore, shall formally protest to WAFU and CAF for necessary action to be taken
This comes a few days after a Ghanaian referee was penalized for wrongfully awarding a penalty.
Joseph Lamptey was found guilty of unlawfully influencing a World Cup qualifier match result following South Africa’s 2-1 win over Senegal in November 2016 in African Group D.
FIFA landed the referee a life ban, from officiating at any level of football. The ban which was issued in March 2017, was on Wednesday, September 6, upheld by the Court of Arbitration for Sport.
Furthermore, it has been confirmed that the South Africa vs Senegal 2018 World Cup qualifier will be replayed.
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