BUJUMBURA January 23rd (ABP) – The chairman of the Burundi Football Federation (FFB), Mr. Révérien Ndikuriyo, held in Bujumbura on Monday January 21, 2019, a press briefing during which he spoke about the state of affairs of preparations for the second match (return match) between the National Senior Selection of Burundi and Gabon on 23rd March this year as part of the playoffs for the African Cup of Nations (CAN 19) which will be held in this year in Egypt.
Speaking first of all about the national selection of the under-20s who have already qualified for the final, Mr. Ndikuriyo said preparations are under way and are in good shape. He took the opportunity to report that those players will leave Bujumbura on the 29th of this month to go directly to Niamey in the capital of Niger where the final will take place.
The FFB chairman recalled that Burundi is in a shock group where it is together with Niger, Nigeria and South Africa. Mr. Ndikuriyo still hopes that Burundi’s representatives will behave well in Niger, since they have eliminated the title holder, Zambia, from the competition. He asks those players to spare no effort in order to win a ticket for the World Cup to be held in Poland.
He nonetheless deplored the absence of player Bienvenu Shaka who is playing in Tunisia in the “Etoile du Sahel” team, who will not be able to go to Niger, following an illness. However, he said he will be replaced by a certain Muhamed Amissi who is evolving in Holland and who, according to Mr. Ndikuriyo, is expected in Bujumbura today the 23rd for formalities related to travel documents to finally join others in workouts. He said that each player will have, before flying to Niger, a motivation equivalent to 500,000 BIF, in addition to travel expenses.
Mr. Ndikuriyo also announced that the under-23 selection will play its first match on March 20th in Bujumbura against Congo, before going to deliver a second leg in Brazzaville on the 26th of the same month. It will be in the context of the U23 CAN, whose final will also be held in Egypt. Regarding the match against Gabon that is expected in Bujumbura on March 23 this year, the FFB chairman recalled that Burundi, with nine points, is in the same group as Mali which is the first with eleven points, Gabon which totals seven points as well as South Sudan which has no points. He said it will be an important match as the first match in Libreville, Gabon, the two teams separated on a tie score (1-1). He asked reporters to start sensitizing the sporting public about this event through their respective media, because, he said, we must at all costs qualify for the CAN, adding that if Burundi qualifies, it will be its very first time since the accession to independence.
For the match to be held in good conditions, some measures have been taken, Ndikuriyo said. He indicated that no one will be allowed to approach the stadium without being in possession of a ticket. Similarly, no journalist will be allowed to enter the stadium without accreditation because, he pointed out, there are some foreign televisions that have already requested permission for coverage of that event.
Recalling that a bonus of motivation of three million Burundian francs is provided to each player, Mr. Ndikuriyo asks the public to encourage the team from the beginning to the end of the match.
Note that with regard to the price of seats, the FFB decided to charge 5000 BIF to access the stadium bleachers around the playground, 20,000 BIF in the stands A and D and 50,000 BIF in the stands B and C, called VIP. The official stand called VVIP is reserved for sponsors. To have a place there, a ticket of 500,000 BIF is required, Mr. Ndikuriyo said.