Sunday, July 14, 2024

CAF expected to announce AFCON tournament dates on Friday

The Confederation of African Football is expected to announce dates for the Men’s and Women’s Africa Cup of Nations finals after their executive meeting on Friday.

This is according to CAF Head of TV and Communications Lux September, who spoke exclusively with SABC Sport, saying the football calendar will feature strongly on the agenda items for the meeting. 

Banyana Banyana won the WAFCON in 2022 and were looking to defend their crown this year, but the usual July/August window has been taken by this year’s Olympic Games in Paris.

It now seems the wait could finally come to an end with Friday’s executive meeting set to give clarity on the situation.

“On Friday there will be an Executive Committee Meeting at 17:00 (Cairo time), and will be chaired by CAF president Patrice Motsepe,” said September.

“The Exco meeting will deliberate on a number of matters, including but not limited to the calendar and pending matters, so we look forward to what will be discussed therein.

“We have to wait for Friday because I think [the meeting] will give clarity on a lot of things.”

With the most recent tournament in Cote d’Ivoire held in January/February 2024, recent reports have suggested a strong possibility of the Men’s AFCON being pushed to December 2025 in Morocco.

September added there have been a lot of discussions between Motsepe and several stakeholders, including European Club Association (ECA), FIFA and UEFA, to find a solution to the jam-packed football calendar. 

“Motsepe has, for the last couple of weeks and on a daily basis, engaging a number of stakeholders, as this question of the calendar is not a simple one – it’s a headache for CAF,” he elaborated.

“Everyone probably thinks we are just aren’t doing anything about it, but I know our president is actively involved, talking to FIFA, UEFA, the European Club Association.

“And I think for the first time, by the way, CAF has a direct line to the ECA, UEFA, FIFA, and all stakeholders, as well as FIFPro, whom CAF have been engaging, and this is probably a first in African football – where the leadership has open engagement.”

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