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CAF Suspends Referee of Ghana-Burkina Faso Tie

For a series of wrong calls in Wednesday’s second semi-final match between Ghana and Burkina Faso at the African Cup of Nations (AFCON), Tunisian referee Slim Jdidi has earned a suspension from the Confederation of African Football (CAF).

Secretary-general of CAF, Hicham El Amrani, speaking at a news conference before the Burkinabe FA lodged an official appeal against Jonathan Pitroipa’s red card, revealed the disappointment of the continental body in the referee’s performance.

“There is a meeting tomorrow (Friday) to discuss the Pitroipa incident,” he said. “Pitroipa’s chances of playing in the final depend on the match report sent in by Jdidi because the organising committee does not have the power to change the referee’s decision unless the referee admits he made a mistake in his official report.”

But Gualbert Kabore, manager of the Stallions team, is hoping two-goal hero Pitroipa can still play in the final.

“The Burkina Faso Football Federation wrote an offical letter of appeal to CAF,” he said. “We lodged it in the two hours after the match as stipulated by the regulations.

“We think we have a good chance of winning the appeal.”

Continuing, he said, “There were some scandalous decisions, we don’t know why, we’re asking lots of questions; there are lots of theories.

“Curiously, the players reacted better than us [the team management staff]. They said if the referee is against us that must mean we are the stronger side.”

Referee Jdid infamously booked Pitroipa for a second time in the encounter for supposedly diving in the penalty zone and sent him out of the field but replays then showed the forward was fouled by a Ghanaian defende. Burkina Fasso also scored a legitimate goal that was disallowed while a strong penalty appeal was also turned down despite Ghana having takien the lead earlier off a controversial penalty call.