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Football : the Haitian National Selection of U-17 is complete again after a Spectacular Desertion

Translated from French by Menno Ernst

Friday 15th June 2007

P-au-P, June 15th 2007 [AlterPresse] ---The Haitian football team under 17 years is complete again, after experiencing an important unrest due to the desertion, on June 12th 2007 in New York, of 13 of the 18 team members, learns the online agency AlterPresse.

In the United States of America, where they made a stopover before taking a flight to South Korea, these young Haitian footballers deserted the group during the night of the 12th of June 2007, according to information relayed by the press.

These members of the U-17 team, who have qualified for the final phase of the next World Cup in August 2007, were on their way to Korea where they had to play a pre-world tournament together with experienced teams, like Brazil, Ghana and South Korea.

The news of the desertion of these footballers caused indignation among Haitians.

The authorities concerned were obliged to call upon 8 other players who did not make part of the group. 5 of them would have taken the plane on June 14th in order to facilitate the participation of Haiti in this international tournament.

The deserters finally found the group again, this 14th June 2007, according to the explanations of Fritz Bélizaire, Minister of sport in the government of Jacques Édouard Alexis.

With the return of these child prodigies, who have become "prodigal children" of the Haiti football in this month of June 2007, Bélizaire estimates that he returns to the technical staff of the national team U-17 to select the players that have to make the voyage to Asia.

In the evening of Tuesday 12th June 2007, 13 of the 18 players of the team, all of them minors, disappeared from the airport John FitzGerald Kennedy in New York. Five of these U-17 footballers would have got lost while they were walking ; the 8 others have deserted the team, according to the information distributed to the press. [do rc apr 15/06/2007 10 :50]