Ethiopia’s ban hits duo


The world’s football’s governing body Fifa banned Ethiopia at the weekend from the World Cup following a long-running row over the leadership of the country’s football federation.

Fifa announced on Friday that Ethiopia had been removed from the World Cup’s qualifying competition by the tournament’s organising committee after refusing to honour an agreement reached with Fifa in February.

Before Friday’s decision, Ethiopia had been third in their four-team qualifying group behind Rwanda and Morocco and ahead of Mauritania.

Fifa said the group table would now be amended with all the matches played by Ethiopia wiped from the standings.

Ethiopia were suspended from international competition in July after failing to reinstate the federation leaders officially recognised by Fifa.

The suspension led to the cancellation of the country’s scheduled World Cup qualifier against Morocco five days ago.

The Amavubi Stars earned maximum points against Mauritania courtesy of Bobo Bola’s 81st minute header and is on the verge of reaching the final qualifying round.

Amavubi Stars, who have lost once and won four are leading Group Eight with 12 points.

Morocco stood in second position with nine points as their game against Ethiopia was postponed after the world’s football governing body, Fifa, banned Ethiopia because of the government's interference in the sport of the country.

Rwanda only needed a draw at home against Ethiopia on October 12 if the ban had not come into place.

Ethiopia was third while Mauritania lays bottom of the table with no points.

Rwanda staged a thrilling comeback to beat Ethiopia 2-1 in Addis Ababa in the first leg of the 2010 World Cup and Africa Cup of Nations qualifier.