The Gambia Football Federation (GFF) has called on FIFA and CAF to investigate Algerian football coach Djamel Belmadi over threats made to Gambian referee Bakary Papa Gassama. 

Belmadi was quoted saying on Algerian TV that “Never again will a referee hurt us…I met him (Gassama) in Turkey and I told him who he is. He stole our hopes. I’m not saying we kill him but we cannot leave him in peace.”

GFF condemned the statement of the Algerian coach and had called on the Algerian FA, FIFA and CAF to take actions against Belmadi. 

In a statement the GFF said: “The Federation has lodged a formal complaint to the Algerian Football Federation on the matter, and has formally requested FIFA and CAF to open investigations and disciplinary proceedings against the Head Coach of the Algeria National Football Team Mr. Djamel Belmadi for his remarks on a video clip and on an Algerian Television.

“Based on the foregoing, we’ve also asked the Algerian federation to make a public statement condemning the actions of Mr. Belmadi and all the verbal attacks against Mr. Gassama by Algerians and take all necessary precautions to restrain their officials and nationals from making any further negative remarks and threats against the person of Mr. Gassama. 

“Otherwise, their federation will be held responsible and complicit for any harm which may happen to him.   

“The GFF wishes to assure that they are in constant contact with Papa, and that all security precautions are in place to keep him away from harm’s way when he returns home from an overseas assignment.” 

Gassama, The Gambia’s pride and Africa’s best referee, earlier this month officiated a World Cup second leg play-off between Algeria and Cameroon in Algiers.

The top African referee had to make several brave calls as Cameroon left it late to defeat Algeria in front of their fans and qualify for the World Cup.

Since that match, Gassama continues to receive threats and verbal abuse from Algerian Football officials and fans, stating the performance of the referee was unsatisfactory.

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