ALGIERS-Head of State Abdelkader Bensalah on Saturday bestowed Medals of National Order of Merit to the players of the Algerian football team, winner of the African Cup of Nations CAN 2019.
In a speech before the "Greens" at the Palace of People (Algiers), Bensalah said “We share the outpouring feelings that overwhelmed the whole country, we reiterate our gratitude and appreciation for the efforts made throughout these weeks.
Considering the pains and difficult moments you went through with patience and pride, we decided to bestow Medals of National Order of Merit upon you in recognition of the historical value added to the Algerian sport.”
“This distinction is really exceptional since it rewards you for the achievements you made. It is also a source of inspiration and an example to follow for future generations,” said Bensalah.
“Algerians inside and abroad have placed their hopes in you from the very beginning of your sporting career, which was crowned during this tough continental competition with the thirty-second edition of the African Cup of Nations (CAN), which took place in the brotherly country of Egypt," stated the Head of State.
"Brilliant in the eyes of this valiant people from whom you have taken your roots, you have carried in your hearts, since you entered this important continental sporting competition, the wish to make this dream come true, to win a second African Cup. Armed with a strong patriotic spirit and sporting values that enhance your honourable record, you have played difficult matches and led matches with a heroic posture and dexterity of talented professionals.
“You were probably desert fighters. This is how you have also earned the acclaim of thousands of supporters and the applause of the young people and families who invested squares and boulevards expressing their joy at the successes achieved so far with such patriotism and modesty,” affirmed Bensalah.
“Your deserved victory at the CAN will remain a sporting event that marks the nation’s history, an event that exploded the Algerian people with joy,” said the Head of State.
"State’s bodies, the Government and military institutions have spared no effort to provide you with the necessary assistance by allowing thousands of citizens to travel to Egypt to be at your side. These significant efforts are rarely made by other nations in such competitions and deserve to be commended,” said Bensalah.