EFF to Fifa: Ethiopia’s Fog-Disrupted WC Qualifier ‘Should’ve Been Postponed’

ADDIS ABABA – The Ethiopian Football Federation (EFF) has lodged a complaint with the world governing body Fifa over Ethiopia’s fog-disrupted World Cup qualifying match against Sierra Leone.

Ethiopia – without an international standard stadium – played host to Sierra Leone in Morocco’s El Jadida city in the Group A opener on Wednesday night.

The match was first halted at halftime after the heavy mist made it impossible for the players to restart the game.

The match was resumed following 30 minutes of additional half-time break. The condition got worse again on two occasions during the second half, forcing the referee to stop it twice.

The two teams eventually shared the spoils with the stop-start match ending 0-0 after 15 minutes of stoppage time.

In a statement today, the Ethiopian Football Federation (EFF) said it has filed a complaint with FIFA over the conditions under which the match was allowed to be played.

The EFF said the decision to allow the qualifier to continue in those conditions was incorrect and unfair, stating “it should have been postponed”.

The Wailias will continue their training in Morocco and play Burkina Faso at the same venue on Tuesday evening.

Ahead of that, the Federation said, it has asked FIFA to bring forward the kick-off time for match day two of the Walias to avoid a repeat of foggy conditions.

Fifa is looking into the request and said it will respond in due time, the EFF statement reads.

Ethiopia’s Next Match

Ethiopia vs Burkina Faso
Date: November 21
Venue: El Abdi Stadium, El Jadida
Kick-off: 10:00 p.m. (GMT +3)

There are nine African qualifying groups with the winners advancing to the 2026 finals in Canada, Mexico and the US. The four best runners-up get a further chance to qualify through a two-tier playoff system.

In the other group A fixture, Egypt beat visiting Djibouti 6-0, to take an early grip on the group lead. Burkina Faso will play host Guinea Bissau in Marrakesh, Morocco, on Saturday in the final match day one of the group.