The upcoming African Cup of Nations 2019, Afcon, which is being hosted by Egypt.
Cameroon, is surely generating a lot of excitement. Interestingly, it was originally supposed to host the tournament, but due to delays in preparation and several other glitches, Egypt was declared the hosts. This will be the fifth instance when Egypt is hosting the Afcon.
The finals will be played on the 19th of July and football fans all over Africa are waiting to watch their favourite stars in action. And if you want to do more, you don’t have to worry.
With a Nairabet affiliate code 2019, you can even bet on the matches anytime you want.
Doesn’t that sound great?
All You Need to Know About the AFCON Cup
The history of the tournament dates to 1957 and back then only Sudan, Egypt and Ethiopia participated in the games which Egypt won. Since then, the number of participants has grown manifold. Some teams have never qualified for the tournament, and chief among them are Central African Republic, Chad. Comoros and Djibouti.
The tournament is a real crowd puller as Africa is a place where football is extremely popular. In fact, some reports even suggest that in Africa, football is almost as popular as in Europe. Since the tournament is being played in the European summer, several African football stars like Sadio Mane and Mohamed Saleh who play for European clubs will not be withdrawn from playing for their clubs.
There are 24 qualifying teams, and they have been divided into six groups of four teams each.
This is the first time in the history of the tournament that as many as 24 teams are playing.
The format is round-robin, and after the group stage, the top two teams and the four best third teams will move into the round of 16. Then comes the quarterfinals to be played by the winners of the round of 16. The winners of the semi-finals will play the grand final on the 19th of July. The losers will contest for a third place.
The excitement is high, and many of the teams have some excellent players, but Egypt is believed to be the favourite to win this tournament. They have the brilliant Mohamed Saleh on their side, and this gives them a great advantage. Even if we go by statistics, Egypt has lost only twice against their opponents in the last 25 home games against African nations.
They have won the Afcon the maximum number of times followed by Cameroon, Ghana, and Nigeria.
The teams Madagascar, Burundi, and Mauritania will be playing in this tournament for the first time. Madagascar is a surprise qualifier, but Burundi is an even bigger surprise as they have been ranked 138/211 in the FIFA World Ranking. Who knows they may throw a few exciting surprises our way! So, gear up and get ready for loads of action if you are a football fan. The match schedule can be found here.