The Gambia will play the United Arab Emirates in a friendly in Dubai on 29 May.

The announcement was made by GFF’s second vice-president Mr. Ebou Faye during an interview with Capital FM over the weekend.

The Scorpions will use the Dubai trip to fine-tune before their TotalEnergies Africa Cup of Nations Cote d’Ivoire 2023 qualifiers against South Sudan and the Republic of the Congo in June.

“The Scorpions are invited by UAE for a friendly game in Dubai to be possibly played on the 30th of May,” the former Real de Banjul coach told Capital FM.

The Alkamba Times understands the match will be played on 29 May in Dubai. Coach Tom Saintfiet is expected to unveil his squad next weekend before they travel to Dubai.

It will be the first time The Gambia plays against the UAE, and it’s hoped that it will give Tom Saintfiet a chance to assess his team’s readiness before facing South Sudan in Thies, Senegal on Saturday 4 June.

The Scorpions, who reached the quarter-finals of the TotalEnergies Africa Cup of Nations earlier this year, will continue to play their home matches away from Bakau’s Independence Stadium which CAF has said does not meet its standards to host international matches.

“It’s a huge disappointment not to be able to play at home after our historic (Nations Cup) qualification – and now again against Chad,” midfielder Sulayman Marreh, 26, told BBC Sport Africa.

“I think the people responsible should look at themselves because this is a big disgrace for Gambian football.

“I hope they can fix it as soon as possible because the Gambian people don’t deserve this.”

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