Afcon 2021: All you need to know ahead of the Africa Cup of Nations in January

Afcon Trophy4 Just like the 32nd edition, $14.2 million will be shared between the eight best teams

Sun, 15 Aug 2021 Source: goal.com

The 33rd edition of the Africa Cup of Nations is not long from now after getting rescheduled due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

Initially, the biennial competition was to be held in June and July of 2021, but the Confederation of African Football brought it forward to January 9 to February 6 due to unfavourable climatic conditions.

The pandemic then resulted in the organizers pushing the competition to January 2022.

Where will Afcon 2021 be played?

Algeria, Guinea, Ivory Coast, DR Congo, Gabon, and Zambia had shown their intentions of hosting Africa's elite competition. The last three bids were rejected; eventually, Ivory Coast were handed a chance to host the tournament.

Cameroon were initially handed the right to host the 2019 edition but due to delays in the delivery of infrastructure, the Anglophone Crisis, and the Boko Haram insurgency, Egypt were given the chance.

The Central African nation was considered for the 2021 edition, with Ivory Coast being pushed to host the 2023 edition. The tournament is scheduled to kick off from January 9 to February 6 with six cities set to host the matches.

Which stadiums will host the matches?

24 teams made it to the finals; defending champions Algeria sealed their place in the competition alongside heavyweights such as the hosts, plus Senegal, Tunisia, Nigeria, and Morocco who were seeded in Pot 1.

2019 hosts Egypt, Mali, Ivory Coast, Guinea, Burkina Faso, and Ghana made it in Pot 2, with Pot 3 comprising of Zimbabwe, Sierra Leone, Mauritania, Gabon, Cape Verde and Guinea-Bissau.

Sudan, Malawi, Equatorial Guinea, Ethiopia, Gambia, and Comoros complete the teams who qualified.

The matches will be played in six stadiums; Ahmadou Ahidjo and Paul Biya Stadiums in Yaounde, Limbe Stadium based in Limbe, Douala's Japoma Stadium, Kouekong Stadium in Bafoussam and the Roumde Adjia Stadium in Garoua. Paul Biya will host the final.

How much will the Afcon winner get?

Just like the 32nd edition, $14.2 million will be shared between the eight best teams.

The quarter-finalists will get $800,000 while beaten semi-finalists who contest the third-place play-off will share $4m, with each getting $2m

The 2021 winner will bag $4.5m with the runners-up pocketing $2.5m.

World-class players are expected to represent their national teams.

Liverpool forward Mohamed Salah should be lining up for the record holders Egypt while his teammate Sadio Mane and Edouard Mendy (of Chelsea) should be in the Senegal squad. Manchester City forward Riyad Mahrez will be expected to play for Algeria as Thomas Partey (Arsenal) lines up for Ghana. Achraf Hakimi of PSG and Hakim Ziyech of Chelsea represent Morocco.

Source: goal.com
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