By Victor Kanayo
As Israel-Hamas crisis escalates, Algeria have agreed to accommodate all home matches involving the Palestinian football team.
Confirming this on Sunday via a statement, the Algerian Football Federation said, “In compliance with the directives of the country’s high authorities, and following the request made by the President of the Palestinian Football Federation, Mr. Jibril Rajoub, the FAF has decided to host all official and unofficial matches in Algeria as part of the preparation of the Palestinian soccer team for the qualifiers for the 2026 World Cup and the 2027 Asian Cup of Nations, and to cover all costs related to these events.”
Already, the move has been commended by Palestinian authorities and football fans alike, seen as a beacon of support in tumultuous times.
The first match to be played in Algerian soil will be a World Cup qualifier between Palestine and Australia on November 21, 2023.
The 2023 Asian Cup starts in January, 2024 with Palestine set to face the United Arab Emirates, Iran and Hong Kong in Qatar.
At least 2,670 people have been killed in the Gaza Strip in a blistering air assault launched by Israel last week after Hamas carried out a bloody attack on Israel that left more than 1,400 people dead.