Rabat - The International Sports Press Association (AIPS) has reacted to South Africa’s decision to rescind its support for Morocco’s 2026 World Cup bid.
Rabat – The International Sports Press Association (AIPS) has reacted to South Africa’s decision to rescind its support for Morocco’s 2026 World Cup bid.
The article, titled “South Africa challenges FIFA with government order on World Cup vote,” followed a statement made by South African Minister of Sport Tokozile Xasa, who publicly announced that her country “cannot support Morocco.”
The comment is a remarkable departure from South Africa’s first statement, posted on April 16, when President of the South African Football Association Danny Jordaan promised to lobby Africa’s soccer leaders to promote the Moroccan bid.
AIPS linked South Africa’s about-face with a tweet posted by US President Donald Trump in April, threatening countries supporting Morocco’s bid.
“South Africa’s government showed every sign of running scared from United States Donald Trump after backtracking at high speed on a pledge to back Morocco’s bid,” wrote Keir Radnedge, AIPS Football Commission Chairman.
Radnedge further said that the world’s soccer governing body (FIFA) may “face demands to consider disqualifying” South Africa from the vote, scheduled to take place at the 68th FIFA Congress on June 13, in Moscow.
South African Minister of Sport said that the country’s policies cannot allow a vote in favor to Morocco to happen.
“It is the mandate of the country and it is an obligation for sporting bodies to understand what the country’s agenda is.”
According to FIFA’s regulations “Discrimination of any kind against a country, private person or group of people on account of ethnic origin, gender, language, religion, politics or any other reason is strictly prohibited and punishable by suspension or expulsion.”
This is not the first time that South Africa has denied its support for Morocco 2026. Last week, South Africa’s Football Association published a statement denying that it had supported the Moroccan bid.
AIPS further stated “now that the South African government has expressed a clear partiality, the country’s vote in FIFA Congress would appear to have been compromised irrevocably.”
Many countries from all the corners of the world have already promised support for the Moroccan bid, including Saint Lucia, Qatar, Botswana, Nigeria, Kenya, Belgium, France, Egypt, Tunisia, and Russia.