Ahly complain to CAF over Papa Gassama

Record African champions Al Ahly say they will file a complaint to CAF over Gambian referee Bakary Papa Gassama’s handling of their CAF Champions League final loss to Moroccan club Wydad Casablanca.

The Egyptian club lost 2-1 to Wydad on aggregate as they failed to fly back to Egypt with one of the biggest prestigious continental trophies but their chairman Mahmoud Taher blamed the defeat on Africa’s finest referees for making “serious and obvious mistakes”, including wrong decisions, or deliberately not counting the lost time, after the stadium was filled with smoke that obscured vision forcing the players to stop for a few minutes, next to the referee’s lack of attention to Al Ahly players complaint about the smoke itself.

“We have a number of motives to file a complaint because of what happened in the final match,” Taher told his club’s official website.

“The referee made huge mistakes whether through taking wrong decisions or because of not adding enough stoppage time after smoke emerged in the pitch and blocked view which forced him to stop the match for a few minutes”, he added.

He revealed that his club faced clear and obvious challenges in their recent matches from referees which made it look as if the team was playing against 12 players including the referee.

“That’s why the club is obliged to submit this complaint that includes all the needed documents and pictures that strengths our position,” he concluded.

This is the first time the Gambian referee has come under scrutiny for decisions he made though analysts believe Ahly’s appeal will be thrown out.