CAIRO, 9 November 2020 – The Confederation of African Football (CAF) says any teams that fail to show for their upcoming qualifying matches for the 2022 Africa Cup of Nations giving COVID-19-related excuses will lose their game, two goals to nil.

The new guidelines say the same score will apply for any teams that cannot field the required number of players – eleven, plus four substitutes.

Squads are usually bigger but teams have expressed concern that they won’t have enough players with many Europe-based players deciding not to travel for the games at a time of heightened fears of COVID-19 transmission.

Two players from the English Premier League, Jordan Ayew of Crystal Palace and Naby Keita of Liverpool contracted the virus while on international duty for Ghana and Mali.

Games will be played without spectators, according to the new guidelines.

CAF permits national football associations to seek special permission if they believe it is safe to have a limited number of fans attend.

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