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CHAN 2021 kicks-off, fans limited to access stadium

Cameroon captain Jacques Zoua (2L) and Zimbabwe captain Ian Nekati (2R) stand with the referrees ahead of the opening match of the African Nations Championships (CHAN)   -  
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Football enthusiasts streamed the Stade Ahmadou Ahidjo in Yaounde to spectate the group A opening matches but were not able to fully access the stadium due to the limited number of people allowed. The Cameroonian government had directed that each stadia to accommodate only 25% of its capacity.

"It's just because we've limited the number of people who have to get into the stadium, otherwise,  I would have wanted to come with my whole family," a fan said.

The 40,000-seat Amadou Ahidjo Stadium saw a buzz of activities before the opening match between the host, Indomitable Lions of Cameroon and Zimbabwe.

Dressed in African traditional attires, dancers showcased rare talents in a spectacular way in ushering the Chan competition.Despite the few number of spectators, the mood was right for the tournament.

"The atmosphere is very good, that's fine with me, but you know that with the health situation, it's going to put a brake on a lot of things. But you already know that Cameroonians are soccer fans. Even if there is anything we are always brave. The atmosphere can only be as good as it was before," another fan said.

The CAF Vice President Constant Omari reassured players and fans of security despite recent threats by armed groups in the English speaking region of Cameroon

Cameroon government had declared a total lockdown in the region to tame elements of insecurity that might disrupt football matched.

Cameroon later beat Zimbabwe 1-0 as Mali ran havoc against Burkina Faso 1-0 for the first group A matches.