Morocco: Cameroon should be disqualified for alleged age-cheating in U17 Afcon

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Cameroon have already qualified for the Fifa U17 World Cup, but face possible disqualification if they are found guilty of age-cheating

The Royal Moroccan Football Federation (FRMF) has threatened to approach Fifa and report Cameroon for allegedly fielding overage players at the ongoing Africa U17 Nations Cup (U17 Afcon) tournament in Tanzania.

The Young Indomitable Lions beat Morocco 2-1 on Thursday and qualified for the semi-finals. They also booked a ticket for the Fifa U17 World Cup to be staged in Brazil later on this year.

FRMF president Fouzi Lekjaa said he alerted Caf about the alleged falsifying of players’ ages and feels the continental football governing body is not appropriately acting on the issue.

Six players were barred from playing after failing their MRI tests for the U17 Afcon, with three of them being Cameroonians.

The FRMF boss said that rather than stopping the guilty players from participating, the most suitable sanctions would be the expulsion of teams fielding overage players and punishment of officials involved in the manipulation of players’ date of births. 

“I will not keep quiet about what is happening at the Africa U17 Afcon in Tanzania. It's scandalous,” Lekjaa was quoted by Le Site as having told Radio Mars.

“I am sorry to say Caf is totally unable to handle this case relating to the age of the players. It is not enough to suspend players who are above the legal age. They (Caf) should rather disqualify these teams and punish officials who are responsible for this situation.”

Lekjaa said they could now take up the matter to the world football governing body Fifa as he claimed that his team faced an older Cameroon side.

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"I called the president of Caf to express my anger. The Morocco national team fielded a squad of young players under the age of 17 against Cameroon who had players who are 25-years-old. We are studying the possibility of resorting to Fifa,” he said.

“Caf must suspend the competition and perform all necessary tests to ensure that all players who are above the legal age are punished.”

Other teams who had players failing the MRI test are Guinea who had one player, while hosts Tanzania had two such cases.