Away from the AFCON 2017 goal fest in the stadiums, a section of the traveling fans are bearing the full brunt of the accommodation crisis in Gabon. In the quiet town of Oyem, Moroccan fans are spending their nights in make-shift tents just to keep up with their team.
With hotels being fully booked, the North Africans make up the largest number of travellers who have benefited from the facility, which has been handed to them by King Mohammed VI’s ambassador to Gabon Abdellah Sbihi.
Africanews caught up with some of the upbeat fans, who seem unperturbed by the organizational chaos, which is also being felt by the locals.
“We will go far in this Afcon, I am confident in this our team. That’s why I came from Equatorial Guinea to give the team support like other supporters here. We’ll win the game, I’m sure of that. Because we have a good team and a good coach who is experienced. Insha’allah we’ll get the three points, we’ll go to the quarterfinals,”one fan said.
“I have confidence in Morocco. I came from Bata in Equatorial Guinea. I made 300 km to come here to support the Moroccan flag and I trust that we will win. Yesterday it was a match that I knew we would win because I know that Morocco is a strong team that plays well. We hope that the Afcon trophy, with the coach that Morocco has, we will win the cup, we will take it to Morocco,“said another fan.
This years tournament has received criticism over disorganization and logistical issues, coupled with poor attendance, as Gabon hosts the event in the backdrop of political dissent.