Caf Champions League: Gor Mahia want clash vs CR Belouizdad moved

Gor Mahia squad in training.
Goal Kenya.
The Kenyan champions have written to the local federation seeking to have their first round, first leg match given another date

Gor Mahia have sought the help of the Football Kenya Federation (FKF) to have their Caf Champions League match against CR Belouizdad rescheduled.

Goal can exclusively reveal the Kenyan champions have written to the federation requesting they call on the African body to have the first leg match set for Algeria on Wednesday to be rescheduled, and played on neutral ground.

According to a top FKF official who did not want to be named, Gor Mahia are arguing that they have failed to acquire a flight to Algeria, claiming their airspace is currently closed because of the Covid-19 pandemic.

“Gor Mahia have written to FKF and we have forwarded the letter to Caf, they want the match rescheduled and played in a neutral ground because they cannot access Algeria,” the source told Goal.

“We will have to wait and see what Caf will say in their response but we should expect an obvious answer, Gor Mahia will be fined heavily because Caf gave them the flights that can be used to reach Algeria but they are now saying they cannot access the country.

“It is unfortunate that even the letter asking us to intervene and talk to Caf came to us at 17:00 on Sunday, and they knew they are travelling on Sunday, I really don’t understand what is the problem at the club.

“What I can tell you, Caf will come hard on them, they will have to pay a fine and it will range from Ksh3million to Ksh4million.

“How come match officials for the match are able to access Algeria and Gor Mahia cannot? They will have to refund Caf for the money they have used in preparations for the match, that is for sure.”

Earlier on Sunday, Goal exclusively reported that Gor Mahia players had threatened to boycott the fixture if they are not paid their dues.

K'Ogalo players have been on a go-slow and Goal understands they held a meeting with some officials on Saturday and made it clear they will not travel to Algeria for the game if they are not paid.

“We have not been paid our November monies as well as this [December] month,” a senior player in the team told Goal on Sunday.

“Yes, we had a meeting on Saturday and our stand was made clear. The office should pay us our allowances and salaries before we talk about the Algeria trip.

“As it stands, nobody has communicated to us regarding the logistics of the game. We are in the dark over everything, but again, they cannot tell us because our stand has been made clear.”

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The Kenyan champions qualified for the next phase of the competition after they managed to secure a 4-3 aggregate win against APR of Rwanda in a two-legged affair.

The Rwandan champions came into the return leg with a 2-1 advantage from their first leg meeting in Kigali, but fell short as Gor Mahia scored two quick goals in added time to win 3-1 on the day and advance.

On the other hand, CR Belouizdad reached the next round after a 4-0 aggregate win against Al Nasr of Libya. The Algerian champions won the first leg away in Tripoli 2-0 and returned home to complete the job with another 2-0 win to set a date with K'Ogalo.