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Africa Cup of Nations put back six months to early 2026

Africa Cup of Nations put back six months to early 2026

THE next Africa Cup of Nations finals will be put back six months to the start of 2026, the Confederation of African Football said . The 2025 finals in Morocco were due to be played next June but that clashed with the expanded 32-team Club World Cup, which will be held in the U.S. from June 15-July 13. Africa will have four teams at the Club World Cup and many of those players are likely to be picked for the Cup of Nations. CAF was repeatedly asked about the obvious clash but failed to offer a solution until General Secretary…
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Poor facilities cost African teams home advantage in World Cup qualifiers

Poor facilities cost African teams home advantage in World Cup qualifiers

NEARLY half of the African countries hosting World Cup qualifiers over the next week are being forced to host their matches in neutral venues as the Confederation of African Football continues to clamp down on poor facilities. Some 17 of the 43 countries who have a home game scheduled in qualification for the 2026 World Cup between Wednesday and next Tuesday are barred from using their own stadia because they are not up to standard. The list includes Kenya, which is one of the three countries designated to co-host the Africa Cup of Nations finals in 2027, and Benin, whose…
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Al Ahly and Esperance highlight the dominance of North Africa in club football. Lessons for other African teams

Al Ahly and Esperance highlight the dominance of North Africa in club football. Lessons for other African teams

AL AHLY, based in Cairo, and Esperance, in Tunis, are among the most successful clubs in the history of the main club cup competition in Africa, the CAF Champions League. Al Ahly has reached the finals multiple times and boasts 11 titles, making it the most successful club in the competition’s history. Similarly, Esperance has secured the title multiple times. These successes have not occurred by accident. The two clubs have financial muscle, effective management systems and large fan bases. These factors not only boost their performances in competition but also influence their strategic decisions at the Confederation of African…
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Disputed cup tie awarded to Moroccan side after kit confiscated

Disputed cup tie awarded to Moroccan side after kit confiscated

MOROCCAN club Renaissance Berkane have been awarded a 3-0 win over hosts USM Alger (USMA) in the first leg of their African Confederation Cup semi-final despite refusing to play when their kit was confiscated by Algerian customs. The Confederation of African Football (CAF) said on Thursday that Sunday's second leg in Morocco would go ahead as scheduled. CAF added that USMA, who are the defending champions, would face further sanctions. Berkane went to the stadium in Algiers last Sunday for the first leg but did not leave the changing rooms at kick off time after their kit had been confiscated by Algerian…
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African football won the 34th Afcon, with Côte d’Ivoire a close second

African football won the 34th Afcon, with Côte d’Ivoire a close second

The 34th Africa Cup of Nations (Afcon) came to an end in Côte d'Ivoire with millions of viewers around the world shouting at TV screens, and an astonishing performance by Côte d'Ivoire both on the field as champions and off it as hosts. The West African country beat Nigeria 2-1 in the final but the good news was bigger than the match. The group stage of the most important national tournament in Africa produced an average of 2.47 goals per game – the highest in the competition for over a decade. CHUKA ONWUMECHILI, Professor of Communications, Howard University As a…
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5 key talking points as Afcon enters the knock-out phase in Côte d’Ivoire

5 key talking points as Afcon enters the knock-out phase in Côte d’Ivoire

JUDGING from media and online activity, this has been the most talked about Africa Cup of Nations (Afcon) in many years. That’s not just because the tournament, held every two years, is becoming a significant event on the international football calendar. It’s also because there was a lot at stake this year – for competing nations, teams, organisers (the Confederation of African Football or Caf) and hosts (Côte d'Ivoire). WYCLIFFE W. NJORORAI SIMIYU, Professor and Chair of Kinesiology and Health Science, Stephen F. Austin State University This is, after all, the third Afcon to test the new format of 24…
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Afcon’s decision to allow 24 countries to play is paying off – and having dramatic repercussions

Afcon’s decision to allow 24 countries to play is paying off – and having dramatic repercussions

BY the end of the group stage, the 34th Africa Cup of Nations (Afcon) was one of the most exciting and memorable Afcon tournaments in recent memory. This was particularly true of the performances of the continent’s best players on the field. As a scholar of sports communication with a focus on African football, I’ve followed developments with interest, notably the 2019 decision to increase the number of national teams in the final stage from 16 to 24. CHUKA ONWUMECHILI, Professor of Communications, Howard University There were several critics of the expansion of the tournament. They argued that Afcon was…
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Tanzania coach suspended at Cup of Nations for insulting opponents

Tanzania coach suspended at Cup of Nations for insulting opponents

TANZANIA coach Adel Amrouche has been suspended at the Africa Cup of Nations finals for making insulting remarks about Morocco, who beat the east African side 3-0 in their opening game at the tournament. The Tanzania Football Federation said the Confederation of African Football (CAF) disciplinary committee had suspended Amrouche for eight matches following a complaint submitted by Morocco. CAF have yet to make an announcement. "In another step, the Tanzania Football Federation (TFF) has suspended coach Amrouche. As a result of that decision, Hemed Morocco has been appointed acting coach and he will be assisted by Juma Mgunda," TFF…
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Gambia keep faith with giant-killers of two years ago

Gambia keep faith with giant-killers of two years ago

GAMBIA will have a consistent look about them for this month’s Africa Cup of Nations finals in the Ivory Coast, selecting 18 players from the squad that provided a giant-killing performance at the last tournament in Cameroon two years ago. Gambia coach Tom Saintfiet only planned to name his squad on Tuesday, but the final 27-man selection had to be submitted to the Confederation of African Football last Wednesday and they made it public on Sunday. It sees a return for the bulk of the squad that reached the quarter-final on their debut appearance at the last finals, beating Tunisia…
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Squad size at next Africa Cup of Nations finals will be 27 per team

Squad size at next Africa Cup of Nations finals will be 27 per team

TEAMS at next month's Africa Cup of Nations finals will be able to select 27 players for the tournament in the Ivory Coast, the Confederation of African Football said. It is a cut of one player from the last finals in Cameroon in 2022 where countries were allowed a 28-man squad. The numbers that year were increased from 23 at previous tournaments because of the COVID-19 pandemic. CAF said only 23 of the 27 players could be selected for each match at the finals, which kick off on Jan. 13. Africa’s decision contrasts with that of European soccer’s governing body…
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