After Asia got the ball rolling last month, it is now the turn of Africa to set its sight of the 2022 FIFA World Cup Qatar. Just 10 days after Algeria triumphed at the CAF Africa Cup of Nations 2019 in Egypt, the continent will stage its draw for the first round of qualifying for football’s flagship event at the CAF Headquarters in Cairo, Egypt at noon today.
The qualification process:
According to CAF, only 28 of the continent’s teams – those ranked lowest in July’s edition of the FIFA/Coca-Cola World Ranking – will be involved in the draw. Those sides will be paired off for home-and-away knockout fixtures.
The teams involved in the first qualifying round includes: Somalia, Eritrea, Djibouti, Seychelles, Sao Tome, Chad, South Sudan, Gambia, Mauritius, Liberia, Ethiopia, Comoros, Botswana, Lesotho, Eswatini, Equatorial Guinea, Rwanda, Burundi, Sudan, Togo, Malawi, Angola, Guinea Bissau, Mozambique, Sierra Leone, Namibia, Central African Republic and Tanzania.
The 14 winners will join the continent’s top-ranked 26 sides, who have been exempted from the initial round of qualifiers. Those 40 teams will then be split into ten groups of four for the second qualifying round.
The ten winners of those groups will then be drawn against each other in home-and-away fixtures, with the five victors advancing to Qatar 2022.