- Morocco denied to lodge at Hotel la Falaise reserved for them by the local organizing committee
- They preferred to lodge at Hotel Relaxe situated on the outskirts of Yaoundé
- Hotel Relaxe is not among the hotels homologated by CAF
The head coach of the Atlas Lions of Morocco, Lhoussaine Ammouta has stated that the difficulties faced by DR Congo, inspired their decision not to lodge at Hotel la Falaise in Yaoundé.
Covid-19 controversies surrounded pre_quarter final match between DR Congo and Cameroon, with the Leopards eventually eliminated from the competition. Since then, defending Champions, Morocco have been cautious in their activities, as they try to avoid a repeat of the DR Congo incident.
Upon their arrival in Yaoundé, where they will face Mali on Sunday in the final, the Moroccans surprisingly refused to lodge at Hotel La Falaise, that was reserved for them by the Local organizing committee of CHAN 2020. They instead preferred to lodge at Hotel Relaxe situated at Nkometou, on the outskirt of Yaoundé.
During his pre_match press conference on Saturday, Lhoussaine Ammouta explained that the decision was just a preventive measure.
“We wanted to limit conditions that could lead to contamination. When we look at the experience of DR Congo, we thought of going to a small hotel, which is very clean and moderate, and maybe not at the same level as La Falaise. But we preferred to stay where it will just be us and I think we made a good choice”, Ammouta told the press.
Concerning Sunday’s game against Mali, Ammouta believes his team is favourite to retain their title, but says they will have to approach the game with caution.
“Our strength is the ability to score and create several chances. We will try to put in this same efforts tomorrow. For the Malians, I think they have a very good defense. They have conceded just two goals from open play this far, so I think we have to be very organized and determined to win the game tomorrow”.
“Statistics wise, we are favorites, but that is not the message I tell my players. Every match has its realities. If we want to win, then we have to put in the same efforts as we have done in previous games. It will be difficult but I think we can we the title.
Ammouta’s Atlas Lions have been very ruthless in front of goal, scoring 13 goals in five games, and conceding just three. The tactician will hope wander boy Soufiane Rahimi, who is top scorer with five goals and three man of the Match, can be at his best when they face Mali on Sunday.
The likes of captain Ayoub El Kalbi, Soufiane Bouftini, Hafidi, Mohammed Ali Bemammer, Anas Zniti and co, will play vital roles, as the Atlas Lions try to skip pass the last speed break in their title defense.