FIFA to hold hearing over Algerian team attack in Cairo
FIFA to hold hearing over Algerian team attack in Cairo
Tuesday, March 23,2010 21:08
By Bikya Masr Staff

CAIRO: When the Algerian football team showed up in Cairo for the final World Cup qualifying group stage match in November, Egyptian fans allegedly attacked the team, throwing rocks and possibly injuring players. FIFA announced that it will hold a hearing next month as part of its investigation into the matter.

The world football governing body said that its panel will hear the case in Zurich on April 15.

According to FIFA’s disciplinary code, the host nation in all matches is responsible for the safety of their opponent and its party. In serious cases, if found guilty of not doing all it could have to ensure the safety of the opposing nation, matches could be moved to a neutral nation or the stadium ordered empty for international matches.

FIFA confirmed that fans had thrown stones at the Algerian team, wounding three players as they were taken to their hotel days before the match. The world football governing body has said it will consider action to be taken upon reviewing a report on the incident from their representatives in Cairo.

“We saw that three players had been injured — Khaled Lemmouchia on the head, Rafik Halliche above the eye and Rafik Saifi on the arm,” FIFA representative Walter Gagg told reporters before the qualifying match in November. “These weren’t superficial injuries,” he stressed.

According to a source close to the Algerian team, the players needed stitches and the team is uncertain if they will be able to play in what has become an emotionally charged match. “I am waiting to hear back from our doctors and they will decide whether the players will be able to go and play. If not, it will really be bad for soccer and the world,” the source said in November.

Republished with Permission from Bikya Masr