Sierra Leone-Benin: Manu Imorou recounts the gruesome situation on Covid tests

In the After, this Tuesday evening on RMC, the Beninese international Manu Imorou recounted the enormous imbroglio around the Covid tests which led to the postponement of the match against Sierra Leone.

Manu Imorou, what happened in front of the Freetown stadium on Tuesday before the match between Sierra Leone and your Benin team?

We were leaving the meeting where the coach announced the composition. Once we arrived at the stadium, we were handed a piece of paper, written in a Bic pen, which said that five of our players were positive for Covid. Obviously, we protested, we did not want to get out (of the bus) to play the match. It was out of the question that we play without these players, knowing that they were holders.

When you arrived in Sierra Leone, there were no positive cases …

We played against Nigeria on Saturday. We got tested after the match, in view of the one against Sierra Leone. Of the 80 people in our delegation, there were zero positives. We got tested again here in Sierra Leone. And there, 1h30 before the match, out of the 80 people, there are five positive, five holders.

The stadium lawn has also made people talk, with a deplorable state …

The lawn is really a sketch. You should know that this stage, at the base, was suspended. We were supposed to play in Conakry, Guinea. They lifted the suspension just for that game. We will say that these are trivial things. We were ready to play on it. We weren’t going to fight over that.

Do you manage to put this situation into perspective?

We manage to laugh about it because it’s all about football, there is worse in life. But the situation is still heavy. We are waiting, we do not know what will happen. We went back to the hotel but we didn’t even have a room, since we left our rooms. We’re in a bit of a weird situation. We don’t know if we’re going to play.

You had support on the spot …

We were lucky that the President of the Federation and the Minister of Sports were with us. They immediately intervened, they got involved. They took our defense. It weighed. They (Sierra Leone) no doubt hoped that we would agree to play.

Do you know when this match will be played?

At the moment, we don’t know anything. We knew that the match should have moved to 7 p.m. (local time, editor’s note). But by then, we were already in front of the hotel. We were stuck on the bus in front of the hotel. We weren’t allowed to get off the bus because we were potentially contagious, let’s say …

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