Tunisia threatened with African Cup ban

Wednesday February 4th, 2015

Tunisia's football federation was fined $50,000 on Tuesday and threatened with the possibility of being banned from the 2017 African Cup of Nations as a result of the team's actions during Saturday's controversial quarterfinal loss to host Equatorial Guinea.

With Tunisia leading 1-0, Mauritian referee Rajindraparsad Seechurn awarded Equatorial Guinea a penalty kick in the last minute of normal time. They scored the equalizer with the opportunity, and later won 2-1 in extra time for their first African Cup semifinals berth.

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With Tunisia furious about Seechurn's call, players and coaches from both teams fought on the sidelines and threw water bottles at each other. Tunisian players attacked the referee and riot police had to settle the chaos at Bata Stadium.


The Confederation of African Football announced its decisions after holding disciplinary meetings on Monday and Tuesday. It suspended Seechurn for poor referring on the late penalty, but did not name or penalize any players.

In addition to the fine, the Tunisian federation was ordered to send a letter of apology by the end of Thursday for "insinuations of bias and lack of ethics against CAF and its officials, or to present irrefutable evidence to substantiate the accusations." Without an apology, CAF said Tunisia could be banned from the 2017 tournament.

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The Tunisian federation was also ordered to pay for damages to a door and a refrigerator in their dressing room.

Equatorial Guinea's federation was fined $5,000 for fans running onto the field after the equalizer.

Wadie Jary, the president of Tunisia's federation, resigned as a member of the African Cup's organizing committee on Sunday. CAF said Jary went onto the field to confront Seechurn after the call.

Mike Fiammetta
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