World Cup qualifying game between Belize and Haiti is a go!
Wednesday, March 24th, 2021
After a FIFA’s Match Commissioner reviewed Haiti’s unstable situation, he confirmed on Wednesday, March 24th, that the World Cup qualifier between Belize and that country would continue as scheduled. The game is taking place tomorrow, Thursday, March 25th starting at 3PM Belize time.
The FIFA’s Commissioner arrived in Port-au-Prince yesterday to assess the situation caused by Haiti’s political turmoil. This is because of the incident on Monday, March 22nd when about 50 armed men on motorcycles stopped the bus transporting the Belize National Football team from the airport to their hotel. According to the Football Federation of Belize (FFB), the police escorting them had to negotiate with the armed men to allow the team to proceed. This was a scary experience, and many of the team members feared for their safety and wanted to leave Haiti.
FIFA and CONCACAF were notified about the incident and a commissioner was sent to review the situation in that country. According to FFB, the commissioner had several meetings with the police and security forces before making his recommendation.
In regards to the incident, part of a correspondence to the FFB, FIFA Head of Qualifiers, and International Matches Tournaments and Events Division reported the following to General Secretary for FFB Earl Jones says:
“No tensions were palpable any longer, and the reported incident was clarified with additional security measures being agreed and undertaken to prevent any repetition, as it was a reported case of miscommunication that led to the bus being driven in a wrong area. Full, open, and cordial discussions were fruitfully held and assurances were given for an upgraded security plan to be implemented. The safety and the security of the visiting team’s delegation, of FIFA’s match officials as well as of all actors of this match are guaranteed at all times during the period of stay in Haiti.”
The note also highlighted that ‘there are no impediments which prevent the match from taking place as scheduled.’
The national football team-the Jaguars have been training, staying positive, and preparing for the game tomorrow. Some of the players mentioned to The Sun that everything is going well; they are standing strong and united.
After tomorrow’s qualifier, the Jaguars will head over to the Dominican Republic on Friday. They will take on Turks and Caicos on Tuesday, March 30th, for their second game.
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