Femi Solajawith agency report
After over one month postponement, the much-awaited draw ceremony for next year’s AFCON tournament will now hold next month, the Confederation of African Football (CAF) confirmed the development yesterday.
The final draw for the premier continental football event was to hold on 25th of June but was postponed due to some logistics reasons at the last minute but the Secreatry General of CAF, Mosengo-Omba, last night confirmed that the ceremony will hold in Yaounde, Cameroon on the 15th of August.
Nigeria is among the 24 countries to be placed in six groups of four teams for the group phase of the tournament.
“The draw will take place during the first half of August. And now we have confirmed the 15th of August and hoping that all things will come up according to plans,” the CAF scribe stated in a Morocco World News report.
The scribe also denied any intention to relocate the AFCON 2021, confirming that the competition will indeed take place in Cameroon.
“AFCON will be organized here in this country (Cameroon) in January next year,” he noted as he expressed his wish for a successful tournament. “We have to work together to deliver an AFCON that will be the first of its kind in the continent,” Mosengo-Omba stated.
The Secretary-General congratulated Cameroon for its level of preparedness to host the continental competition.
The tournament, which was scheduled to take place between January and February 2021, was moved to between January 9 and February 6, 2022 due to the coronavirus pandemic.
In the new 24-team format, the winners and the runner-ups of each group will advance to the round of 16 along with the four best-ranked third-placed teams.
Super Eagles of Nigeria, placed third at the last edition held in Egypt and would be seeding alongside defending champions, Fennec of Algeria, host Indomitable Lions of Cameroon, runners up at the last edition, Teranga Lions of Senegal, Pharaohs of Egypt and Atlas Lions of Morocco complete the list of top seeds.