The Arsenal skipper, Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and his Gabon teammates were forced to stay at the airport sleeping on the floor for the night of their arrival in Gambia ahead of their vital 2021 Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) qualifier against Gambia.
Aubameyang explained the plight of their arrival at Banjul airport, Gambia on Sunday via social media ahead of Monday’s Group D clash in the capital of Gambia.
The reason given for their detainment at the airport and disapproving with their transfer to their hotel as reported by Gabon delegation was administrative problem in Gambia.
It was the following morning after Gambian government intervention that they were given permission to leave the airport.
No major reason was given beside administrative problem for the delay of the team to at the airport and head to their hotel after arrival.
This was an unusual action according to the previous standards of gamesmanship in African football.
Gabon’s football federation posted pictures of the incident on its Facebook page but did not make any comment on the situation.
“Nice job CAF, it’s as if we were back in the 1990s,” Aubameyang posted on Twitter in a reference to previous foibles blamed on the Confederation of African Football (CAF).
“This will not demotivate us, but people need to know and CAF need to take responsibility.
“(It is) 2020 and we want Africa to grow, but this is not how we will get there,” the Arsenal striker added later.
Gabon is currently at the top of the group standings with three points ahead of Gambia, who are desperately seeking to reach the African Nations Cup finals for the first time in history.
The top two teams in the group — which also includes Angola and the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) — advance to the finals in Cameroon in early 2022.