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Last Updated: Monday, 10 May, 2004, 11:24 GMT 12:24 UK
Wade backs Morocco bid
Senegal's President Abdoulaye Wade
Senegal's President Abdoulaye Wade is backing Morocco's 2010 bid
Senegal's President Abdoulaye Wade will go to Zurich this week to lend his support to Morocco's 2010 World Cup bid.

President Wade will be part of the Moroccan delegation which will make the case for Africa's first World Cup to be given to the North African country.

Fifa will announce the 2010 hosts on saturday, 15 May.

South Africa, who are widely seen as the favourites, Egypt, Libya and Tunisia are the other contenders for the 2010 event.

The Senegalese government announced recently that the country will officially back the Moroccan bid in a move to further strengthen relations between the two countries.

In a communiqué released at the weekend, Saad Kettani, president of the Morocco 2010 bid, welcomed the Senegalese position.

"We are delighted that president Wade has accepted to be part of our delegation," he said.

"He represents a country which plays a prominent and significant role in Africa and presides over a state which has a fine example of democracy and free speech."

"A Fifa World Cup staged in Morocco would truly be a World Cup for the whole of Africa - a view shared by president Wade.

"As brother African countries, Morocco and Senegal have always worked together for benefit of all Africa, and President Wade's presence in our delegation is another example of this relationship," Kettani added.

The close ties come despite a dressing room brawl in Rabat after a Champions League game involving clubs from the two countries.

Not longer after the game between Raja Casablanca and Jeanne d'Arc, a statement was issued and the matter resolved.

Morocco's delegation will be headed by Prince Moulay Rachid, the brother of reigning King Mohamed VI.

Other personalities joining the Morocco delegation include the Brazilian 2002 World Cup winning coach Luis Felipe Scolari and athlete Hicham El Guerrouj.

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