23 certified groups and one finish of the qualifier

We know of 23 of the 24 teams that will play the next African Cup of Nations football (CAN 2021) in January / February 2022 in Cameroon. However, there is still a place that can be attributed to CAN 2021, the Sierra Leone-Benin meeting in Group L in the qualifiers has been postponed until June 2021 after a controversy over positive Covid tests.

The Africa Cup of Nations is almost full. Twenty-three of the twenty-four teams that will play in the final in January / February 2022 are now known.

Before the last two days eliminating, played between 24 and 30 March, only five elections had their tickets in their pockets: Cameroon (host country and automatically qualified), Algeria (defending champions), Senegal (CAN 2019 finalist), Mali and Tunisia. These five also end with a nice balance sheet, as the Algerians amount to 14 points (out of 18 possible), the Senegalese as well, the Malians 13 and the Tunisians 16 (record for these qualifiers).

In recent days, these tenors have been united (in alphabetical order) by Burkina Faso, Cape Verde, Côte d’Ivoire, the Comoros, Egypt, Ethiopia, Gabon, Gambia, Ghana, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Equatorial Guinea, Malawi, Mauritania, Morocco, Nigeria, Sudan, Zimbabwe.

Two new and four notable absentees

Among the countries mentioned, two will make their debut at CAN: the Comoros and the Gambia. Qualified victories on the pitch confirming the development of Comorian and Gambian football.

On the other hand, we note that four former African champions will miss this “CAN 2021” [1] : South Africa (Holy 1996) which was crossed by Ghana and Sudan in Group C; Democratic Republic of the Congo (1968 and 1974) which therefore ends up behind Gambia and Gabon (Group D); Congo-Brazzaville (1972) in a group I dominated by Senegal and Guinea-Bissau; and Zambia (winner of CAN 2012) third in Group H after Algeria and Zimbabwe.

One last stranger

There is one last place to be allocated and it was not planned. The Sierra Leone and Benin teams will meet next June, rfi.fr learned from confirming sources. This will not help the Beninese who already have two matches planned, right now, with who qualifies for the WC 2022. Sierra Leoneans was eliminated in the preliminary round of the World Cup 2022 and will therefore be able to focus on this crucial meeting.

This “final” in Group L, to nominate the second qualified selection along with Nigeria, would take place on March 30 in Freetown. However, the match never started.. The squirrels learned just before kickoff that five of their owners had tested positive for Covid. An arm fracture followed which led to this launch. The Beninées will drink the kale to dræg, during these qualifiers for CAN 2021 …

[1] The African Football Confederation (CAF) has decided that the competition will continue to be called CAN 2021, despite being postponed until 2022.


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