FIFA sanctions Sierra Leone after 2022 World Cup qualifier

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ZURICH, SWITZERLAND - OCTOBER 20: The FIFA logo is seen outside the FIFA headquarters prior to the FIFA Executive Committee Meeting on October 20, 2011 in Zurich, Switzerland. During their third meeting of the year, held over two days, the FIFA Executive Committee will approve the match schedules for the FIFA Confederations Cup Brazil 2013 and the 2014 FIFA World Cup Brazil. (Photo by Harold Cunningham/Getty Images)
The FIFA logo is seen outside the FIFA headquarters. (Photo by Harold Cunningham/Getty Images)

FIFA on Wednesday ordered Sierra Leone to play one match behind closed doors and fined the country’s football federation CHF 50,000 ($50,000) following the latest preliminary round of the 2022 FIFA World Cup qualifiers.

A number of incidents took place when Sierra Leone hosted Liberia for the return leg of their qualifier in Freetown in September which breached FIFA’s security code.

“Notably, as a result of a number of incidents (including the invasion of the field of play, the throwing of objects and a lack of order or discipline observed in and around the stadium) that occurred in connection with the match between Sierra Leone and Liberia on 8 September 2019, the FIFA Disciplinary Committee has ordered the Sierra Leone Football Association (SLFA) to play one match without spectators,” FIFA said in a statement.

Sierra Leone, despite winning the match 1-0, was eliminated 3-2 on aggregate.

Sierra Leone is scheduled to play Lesotho in their opening game in the 2021 Africa Cup of Nations qualifiers in November.

Gambia and Sudan were also sanctioned by world football’s governing body following security lapses in their World Cup qualifiers last month against Angola and Chad respectively.

Gambia was issued with a warning and fined CHF10,000 ($10,000) while Sudan was warned and fined CHF30,000 ($30,000).

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