By The Atlas Lions, Sep 27 2019 12:15PM
The goalkeeper faked an injury to avoid playing a game as a substitute.
By Yahia Hatim - Morocco World News
Rabat – The Royal Moroccan Football Federation (FRMF) has suspended the goalkeeper of the Atlas Lions and Wydad Casablanca, Ahmed Reda Tagnaouti, from playing with the national team for three months.
The suspension comes after Tagnaouti faked an injury to avoid playing as a substitute for the national domestic team.
Morocco’s Atlas Lions have both an international and domestic team.
Houcine Ammouta, the Moroccan domestic team’s coach, had summoned the 23-year-old goalkeeper to be part of the squad facing Algeria on September 21 in a qualifier game for the 2020 African Nations Championship (CHAN).
On the day of the game, Ammouta picked Anas Zniti, Raja Casablanca’s goalkeeper, in the starting eleven. Unsatisfied with the coach’s decision, Tagnaouti faked an injury to avoid sitting on the bench during the game.
Ammouta, displeased with the goalkeeper’s behavior, filed a detailed report to FRMF’s president, Fouzi Lekjaa.
After a board meeting Thursday, September 26, FRMF decided to suspend Tagnaouti from playing with the Moroccan national team in any event for three months. The federation also condemned his lack of professionalism and discipline.
The goalkeeper can still play for his club, Wydad Casablanca, during the suspension period.
Tagnaouti was one of three goalkeepers summoned in August 2019 to play for the Atlas Lions by coach Vahid Halilhodzic.
During his suspension, Tagnaouti will miss two of the Atlas Lions’ upcoming friendly games, against Gabon and Libya, on October 11 and 15, respectively. He will also miss the final game of CHAN eliminations against Algeria, on October 18.
Finally, the player will miss the first two games of the 2021 Africa Cup of Nations (CAN) qualifiers, against Mauritania and Burundi, in November.
This is not the first time that problems arise within the Moroccan squads. In June 2019, the striker Abderrazak Hamdallah walked out of Morocco’s 2019 CAN training camp.
FRMF stated that he left because of an injury, but Hamdallah denied this statement, sharing a video of himself working out on his social media accounts.
Several sport outlets suggested that Hamdallah left due to problems with other players on the squad. The player, however, did not publicly say why he quit the training camp.