AFCON 2023: Ivory Coast progress ‘reassures’ Patrice Motsepe

Caf boss Patrice Motsepe met Ivorian President Alassane Ouattara in Abidjan

African football’s boss Patrice Motsepe is “reassured” and “satisfied” with the progress Ivory Coast has made as the country prepares to host the 2023 Africa Cup of Nations.

Confederation of African Football president Motsepe visited Abidjan on Monday to assess readiness for the tournament, which is scheduled to take place in June and July next year.

“We are confident that the Afcon you will organise here will be the best,” Motsepe said.

“We are reassured by the different infrastructure that you have put in place to host this competition. I am satisfied with the progress made, even if there are still some problems to sort out.”

Ivory Coast, which last hosted the Nations Cup in 1984, is building or renovating six stadiums for the competition.

Motsepe, who met Ivorian President Alassane Ouattara on his trip to the West African country, has said there are several areas where organisation can improve on the 2021 edition, which was held in Cameroon at the start of this year.

The competition was overshadowed by the Olembe Stadium tragedy, which saw eight people killed in a crush outside the ground before a last-16 match.

“We’ve identified areas where we can improve and will improve,” Motsepe said. “And those issues are the ones that go into discussion.

“We are going to Ivory Coast next year but we are not going to make the same mistakes again.

“There are certain preconditions and in the public domain, I have to be nice and polite and of course respectful.

“But I think behind closed doors, we will be significantly more assertive and more uncompromising in terms of safety, the police, the security, the army where appropriate, football pitches – and hopefully Covid-19 will be less of a challenge.”

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Source: BBC