Mareeg.com-Affected by a combination of poor infrastructure, political unrest and lack of funding, football in Somalia has been through some rough phases. Nonetheless, the country continues to defy all odds and is moving towards a bright future. The country is still struggling with the challenges of rebuilding the nation from terror wars, but the Somali Football Federation is committed towards change.
Somalia’s Rocky Road To The World Cup Dream
Whether it’s due to lack of money and organization or crippled by civil war, Somali has never qualified for the world cup. Due to lack of sponsorship, there is little to no money in Somali football, and hence most players receive low salaries. That means the players need an extra job next to their football career to sustain themselves. In fact, those who place wagers on Betway find it more lucrative than professional footballers in the country.
Over the last decade, the Somali national team has had to play their home games in Ethiopia and Kenya. Some players have also received a threat from the terror group, Al Shabaab, who considers football a sinful activity. Nonetheless, the president of the Somali FA says Somalia is a football country despite the obvious challenges that have been present.
Earlier in February, the Somali U20 team was scheduled to play Eritrea at Mogadishu, but the match postponed. That would have been the first time Somalia hosted an international game over the last three decades. The country hasn’t played any international game since the 1988 Olympic qualifiers when they hosted Mauritius.
The Future of Football in Somalia
While the Somalia football scene has been struggling due to political unrest, the Somali FA president Abdigani Said expressed his delight towards the game. Abdigani is also satisfied with the country’s plans for the sport’s future and hopes that Mogadishu will host a Cecafa regional tournament in the near future. That will be a major milestone for Somalia, as betting enthusiasts continue enjoying great soccer betting odds with Betway across various markets.
This year Somalia is expecting to play Rwanda in the first and second leg of the African Nations championship in July and August. The matches are yet to be confirmed given Somalia’s political history. Nonetheless, the Somali Football Federation believes the country is ready to host an international match. The Somali people are also eager to see their national team play at home.
Ahead of the African Nations Championship tournament, the Somali Football Association recently named Ghana’s Bashiru Hayford as the national head coach. Bashiru joins the horn of Africa nation with a lot of experience after handling the women national team in Ghana. He also coached Ashgold and Asante Koto ko, among other clubs.
As the Somalis continue rebuilding their country amidst terror wars in the region, the Football Association continues being hopeful for a bright future. With peace restored in the country, the SFA hopes to host an international match in the near future after being unable to participate in over 30 years. Nonetheless, the country needs a lot of assistance from FIFA and other football governing bodies.