Olympic Athletes Promised Legal Support if They Protest

GENEVA – Athletes who make political or social justice protests at the Tokyo Olympics were promised legal support Thursday by a global union and an activist group in Germany. The pledges came one day after the International Olympic Committee confirmed its long-standing ban on “demonstration or political, religious or racial propaganda” on the field of play, medal podiums or official ceremonies. Raising a fist or kneeling for a national anthem could lead to punishment from the IOC. The Olympic body’s legal commission should clarify what kind of punishment before this…

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Women Referees Make African Football History at CHAN

LIMBE, CAMEROON – Three women referees created history Saturday at the African Nations Championship (CHAN) quarterfinals. Ethiopian referee Lidya Tafesse and her assistants, Malawian Bernadettar Kwimbira and Nigerian Mimisen Iyorhe, became the first women to control a match at a senior CAF male tournament. The breakthrough came two years after women referees handled matches at the African under-23 and under-17 Cup of Nations tournaments. Tafesse, a former professional basketball player, tolerated no foul play as she yellow-carded three Tanzanians within 10 minutes during the second half. African male footballers often…

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Cameroon Deploys Troops as Separatists Threaten African Nations Championship

In Cameroon, one week ahead of the African Nations Soccer Championship, officials have deployed troops to protect players from across Africa as separatists vow to stop the games in restive English-speaking regions. The government is assuring football fans from across Africa that the games will be safe and that measures have also been taken to stop the spread of COVID-19. The official song of the African Nations Championship (CHAN), by Cameroon singer Jane Mary Ihims, plays in markets and popular spots in Cameroon’s capital city, Yaoundé, ahead of the official…

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Covid-19: All African nations seeks Fifa’s Coronavirus Relief fund help

ZURICH (Switzerland), Every single country in Africa has applied to Fifa to access a grant through the world governing body’s COVID-19 Relief Plan. Formally approved in June, the Fifa fund is making US$1.5 billion available to its 211 member associations and six confederations. On Wednesday, Fifa announced that it believes the coronavirus pandemic has cost the global football economy an estimated 14 billion US dollars. “54 African member associations have applied for grants,” a Fifa spokesperson said. Fifa has revealed that over 150 countries have already applied for the scheme,…

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Cameroon Declines Hosting Africa Champions League, Blames COVID-19

YAOUNDE, CAMEROON – Soccer fans in Cameroon voiced disappointment after the government announced Monday it would not host the finals of the 2020 African Champions League in September. The government cites the risk posed by COVID-19. Some fans say they understand, while others question if the infection is the real reason. Mbombo Njoya, president of Cameroon’s Football Association FECAFOOT, says a recent spike in COVID-19 made the government decide not to host the continental event. The disease is caused by the coronavirus. “I have informed CAF that the government has…

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Ugandan Top Runners Struggle to Train for Tokyo Olympics During Pandemic

KAMPALA, UGANDA – The coronavirus pandemic has some top-flight athletes struggling to stay sharp for next year’s Tokyo Olympics after training facilities were shut down and competitions cancelled. Ugandan runner Halima Nakaayi, the gold medalist in the 800 meters at the 2019 World Athletics Championships, is doing her best to prepare under the restrictions imposed by COVID-19. With the games postponed and Uganda’s gyms and stadiums closed since March to curb the spread of COVID-19, her only option is Kampala’s open roads. But the 25-year-old runner said training at home…

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FIFA, WHO and football stakeholders draft medical considerations and risk assessment tool

FIFA is sharing a football risk assessment tool with its 211 member associations, the six continental confederations and other stakeholders in order to facilitate the planning of the resumption of football activities by competition and match organisers, as soon as health authorities and governments consider it safe. It has been developed in conjunction with the World Health Organization (WHO), UEFA, the European Club Association (ECA), FIFPRO, the World Leagues Forum and European Leagues, includes a list of mitigation measures that aim to reduce the overall risk of mass gatherings contributing…

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Tunisia announce roadmap for return to competitions in August

The Tunisian Football Federation (FTF) has sent out a guideline to all Ligue 1 and some Ligue 2 clubs, in preparation to resuming the football season. The Tunisian football league has been suspended since mid-March 2020 due to COVID-19. FTF has ended the second-tier Ligue 2 season with the exception of teams concerned with promotion and relegation. The federation has announced playoff tournaments to determine relegation to Ligue 3 and promotion to Ligue 2. As far as Ligue 1 is concerned, FTF earlier proposed a plan has now received the…

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