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banner Monday, 19 March, 2001, 15:03 GMT
Fifa confirm Guinea ban
guinea banned by Fifa
Guinea have refused to back down to Fifa
Guinea have now been formally banned from all international football activities due to government interference in the sport.

World governing body Fifa acted after the West African country ignored several deadlines to reinstate the national football association executive committee fired in January.

Sports minister Abdelkader Sangare took the action after Guinea had been held at home by Togo and Malawi in qualifying matches for the 2002 African Nations Cup and World Cup competitions.

Guinea were due to play the Togolese again on Sunday in Lome but Confederation of African Football spokesman Viken Djizmedjian confirmed the fixture had been cancelled.

"The matches Guinea played against Uganda, Senegal and Togo in Group 5 of the African Nations Cup have been declared null and void," the Cairo-based official said.

The matches Guinea played have been declared null and void
  Viken Djizmedjian, CAF
Similar action is likely in the World Cup where Guinea were lying second in Group E behind South Africa.

'Sovereign state'

It had been hoped Guinea could catch up after missing their game in South Africa last weekend in the fifth round of qualifying matches.

Guinea beat Zimbabwe and Burkina Faso before the 1-1 draw with Malawi that triggered government intervention with Sangare saying "Guinea was a sovereign state that would not be dictated to by Fifa".

Fifa's original suspension came on the eve of the Under-17 Cup of Nations final which Guinea had qualified for, but subsequently missed and therefore also lost out on a place at the Under-17 World Cup in Trinidad later this year.

After sacking the executive, the minister ordered fresh government-backed elections that saw employers' federation boss Mamadou Sylla replace Salifou Camara as chairman.

While officials from each region of Guinea voted, Fifa refused to accept the results because only the sacked executive had the authority to organise elections.

It is not the first time Guinean politicians have entered the football arena - late president Sekou Toure jailed players from the Hafia club after they surrendered a three-goal lead in the 1976 African Champions Cup final.

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See also:

14 Feb 01 |  Africa
Troubled Guinea elects new FA
05 Mar 01 |  Africa
South Africa v Guinea off
06 Mar 01 |  Sports Talk
Should Guinea have been banned?
02 Mar 01 |  Africa
Fifa bans Guinea
01 Mar 01 |  Africa
Guinea stalemate reaches climax
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