Panama to play next home World Cup qualifier without fans

Source: Xinhua| 2021-12-18 09:15:43|Editor: huaxia

PANAMA CITY, Dec. 17 (Xinhua) -- Panama will play their next home World Cup qualifier against Jamaica behind closed doors after FIFA upheld a sanction for homophobic chants from fans.

The Panamanian football federation, known as Fepafut, said the game's world governing body also ratified a fine of 50,000 Swiss francs (60,000 U.S. dollars) for the behavior of fans during World Cup qualifiers in September.

Panama had succeeded in suspending the decision last month, pending the result of a second-instance hearing by the FIFA Appeal Committee.

"Fepafut has a firm commitment to fair play and fight against all forms of discrimination or intolerance," the entity said in a statement. "Once again, fans are urged to support our national team while always maintaining these principles."

Panama will host Jamaica on January 30, three days after an away clash with Costa Rica. The triple-header of qualifiers also includes a visit to Mexico on February 2.

Panama is currently fourth in the eight-team final stage of the North America, Central America and Caribbean (CONCACAF) World Cup qualifying tournament.

The top three teams will earn an automatic place in football's showpiece event in Qatar next year. The fourth-ranked side will advance to an intercontinental playoff. Enditem

KEY WORDS: Sports,Football,World Cup qualifier