Young Africans banned from Africa Champions league

The Tanzania Football Federation (TFF) has banned Young Africans from competing in next season’s African Champions League.

The move follows the club’s refusal to play local rivals Simba in the third-place play-off game at the regional Cecafa Club Cup on Sunday.

Prisons, who finished second in the Tanzanian league, will go into the Champions League instead.

As well as the TFF’s action Young Africans have been banned for three years by the Council for East and Central Africa Football Associations (Cecafa) and fined US$35,000.

Young Africans, also known as Yanga, apparently unsuccessfully demanded a US$50,000 appearance fee.

Young African spokesman Francis Lucas defended the club’s demands claiming that games between Yanga and Simba can generate up to US$500,000.

The TFF president Leodegar Tenga was angry with Young Africans: “They have embarrassed the TFF and undermined our efforts of developing football in this region, we must ensure this kind of misconduct is not repeated ever.

“Given the gravity of the offence, TFF has invoked its powers under its constitution to punish Yanga so that it can serve as a lesson to other teams.

“The Executive Commitee has suspended Yanga from all international matches, both competitive and friendly, effective from 29th July 2008.

“The Cecafa tournament is known and sanctioned by Caf, so we will send the details of the offence and actions taken against Yanga to Caf.”

Yanga President Imani Madega however was defiant: “We’ll appeal all the way to Fifa if necessary. to make sure we get justice.

“They didn’t bother to investigate and find out the reasons why we didn’t play, they just went ahead and issued the punishment. We had valid reasons to boycott the match”

As well as the fine and ban, Young Africans missed on the chance of winning the third-place prize money of US$10,000, which went to Simba.

Cecafa general secretary Nicolas Musonye insisted that Young Africans had promised to honour the fixture during the pre-match meeting without making any demands.

Tusker from Kenya won the tournament with a win a 2-1 win over URA of Uganda.

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