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Le Roy blasts again as traffic unsettle Congo

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LE ROY-COACH CONGO

BATA, January 17 – Veteran Congo Brazzaville coach Claude Le Roy on Saturday again questioned the organisers of the Africa Cup of Nations after his team were held up in traffic on their way to the tournament’s opening game.

Congo snatched a late equaliser to draw 1-1 with hosts Equatorial Guinea in Bata as Thievy Bifouma of Spanish side Almeria struck three minutes from time to cancel out Emilio Nsue’s opener.

Le Roy, taking part in his eighth Cup of Nations, was pleased with the way his side hit back to earn a point in the Group A encounter, but was rather less happy about his team’s build-up to the game.

“We were in traffic for 65 minutes under 40-degree heat and so if our performance at the beginning of the match was poor, it was because of this,” the Frenchman said.

“It usually takes us 12 minutes. The CAF (Confederation of African Football) should be able to protect all the teams in the competition and not disrespect some of them.

“It was great that Equatorial Guinea saved this competition, they are fantastic people, but we should uphold fair play.”

Le Roy’s comments come after he hit out at poor facilities at his team’s hotel following their arrival in Bata, the country’s largest city, earlier this week.

Congo skipper Prince Oniangue added: “The quality of preparation often determines a team’s performance.

“We were held up for more than an hour on our way to the stadium and we had only 10 minutes to change into our jerseys and be ready for the match,” added the midfielder, who plays for French top-flight side Reims.

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