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Monday, July 22, 2024


    Africa Cup of Nations to kick off in Ivory Coast on Saturday

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    The postponed 2023 Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) will kick off on Saturday, with hosts Ivory Coast will take on Guinea-Bissau in the tournament’s opener.

    One of the competitive teams of the continent, Ivory Coast, the 1992 and 2015 winners, will play against Guinea-Bissau at Abidjan’s 60,000-capacity Alassane Ouattara Stadium.

    The 34th Africa Cup of Nations will conclude with the final showdown on Feb. 11 in Abidjan.

    The Round of 16 will begin on Jan. 27, with the quarterfinal and semifinal stages starting on Feb. 2 and 7, respectively.

    Egypt is the most successful team in the AFCON, lifting seven titles, the last in 2010.

    The Pharaohs clinched the AFCON trophy thrice on home soil (1959, 1986, and 2006).

    Egypt is the only nation to claim it three times consecutively in 2006, 2008, and 2010.

    Cameroon are the second most successful team with five wins, followed by Ghana with four, Nigeria with three, and Ivory Coast, Algeria, and the Democratic Republic of Congo with two each.

    Sadio Mane-led Senegal are the defending AFCON champions after they beat Egypt 4-2 on penalties in the 2021 final held in Cameroon’s capital, Yaounde.

    It was Senegal’s first AFCON title.

    Founded in 1957, the AFCON is Africa’s main international football competition.

    Africa’s football authority previously postponed the football event to 2024 due to adverse weather conditions in Ivory Coast.

    The tournament will include six groups of four teams, with the top two nations in each group automatically advancing to the Round of 16.

    In addition, the four highest ranked third-placed nations will join them in the first knockout stage.

    2023 Africa Cup of Nations groups

    Group A: Ivory Coast, Nigeria, Equatorial Guinea, and Guinea-Bissau

    Group B: Egypt, Ghana, Cape Verde, and Mozambique

    Group C: Senegal, Cameroon, Guinea, and The Gambia

    Group D: Algeria, Burkina Faso, Mauritania, and Angola

    Group E: Tunisia, Mali, South Africa, and Namibia

    Group F: Morocco, DR Congo, Zambia, and Tanzania.

    Source AA

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