When the coronavirus started in China, Wuhan, no one expected that it would cause so much damage. It started destroying more lives of people, most of the western countries’ economies, and slowly encroached towards churches and sports. By the time it reached Africa, most sectors of the world were not operating. This article discusses the position of African football amid the pandemic.
The virus affected the sports sector making authorities cancel most tournaments and events to curb the spread. Football is among the sports not functioning, most states had closed all pitches and stopped all football activities by March. The managers of various clubs, both internationally and in Africa, faced challenges in paying salaries to players.
However, despite the dark season, the football matches have been resuming slowly. In Africa, some officials organized for a virtual conference to talk on how they could impose proper measures amid pandemic.
Ahmad, the Confederation of African Football president, is to talk on issues such as the 24-team Africa Cup of Nations. Authorities planned for the ANC in Cameroon next January to February.
Abdelmounaim Bah, the acting Confederation of African Football general secretary, says that:
“We dearly want the Africa Cup of Nations to go ahead as planned next January and February.”
African Football and World Cup
Teams were to play the 1st group fixtures last March but authorities pushed it until October. The officials are to postpone the fixtures they had planned for October and November to next year amid to finish the 2021 Africa Cup of Nations succeeding. Sports authorities broadcast that the African champions will win the 4-team mini-leagues. African champions are Algeria, Tunisia, Nigeria, Cameroon, Mali, Egypt, Ghana, Senegal, Morocco, and the DRC.
Africa Cup of Nations
There are to be about 4 rounds of succeeding to go for the event next January and February in Cameroon. The teams are to play 2 rounds each in October and also in November FIFA windows to bring over 20 qualifiers. However, Cameroon will be an automatic qualifier.
African Nations Championship
Cameroon was to hold the 16-nation event kept for footballers playing in their native state. However, the coronavirus pushed the April finals to another date. Morocco is to protect a title they received for winning for the 1st time whereas Togo lost Kossi Koudagba who is the team’s forward.
CAF Champions League
There are 2 options for finishing the 2019-2020 version of the elite club tournament. The Confederation of African Football says scenario 1 is playing home-and-away half finals from late July to early August and between August 7 to 9 and final on August 28th. The other scenario is arranging the semis on September 4th to 6th and September 11th and 13th with the final in late September.
CAF Confederation Cup
There are also 2 options for the African equal of the Europa League with more than 1 set of semi dates similar to those of the Champions League. For the first scenario, the final in Rabat is to occur late August whereas if CAF considers scenario 2 then the finals will be in late September.