CAF Shifts AFCON 2023 Back to Summer

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The Confederation of African Football (CAF), thursday announced that the next edition of its premier tournament after the one in Cameroon will hold in June/July of 2023.

According to the acting scribe of CAF, Abel Bah, the event would hold at a different calendar from the AFCON 2022 in Cameroon. The preference of January/February date for the edition in Cameroon is because of weather situation of the Central African country.

The timing of the competition has been the subject of speculation after President Ahmad stated in June that it would take place in 2023 while saying he ‘did not know what month’.

“As of today, the 2023 Nations Cup is planned for June/July because, to make it clear, in the regulations we have decided to play all Nations Cups in June/July,” Bah told BBC Sport Africa.

In 2017, CAF decided to schedule all future Nations Cup for these months, enshrining the change in its tournament regulations.

The next Nations Cup will take place in January 2022 however owing to unfavourable weather conditions in Cameroon in June and July, when the host country suffers some of the wettest months of the year.

“The Nations Cup in Cameroon, after the request of the authorities, was postponed to January/February,” added Bah.

“As of today, we haven’t received the same request from Ivorian authorities.”

Given that Cote d’ivoire suffers its wettest month of the year in June, such a request should not be ruled out.

However a move to earlier dates in 2023 could prove difficult as the 2022 World Cup will be played between 21 November and 18 December.

With a Nations Cup in early 2022 and mid-2023, and the 2022 World Cup it means some of Africa’s leading footballers could play three major tournaments in the space of 18 months.