Timetable Switch for the African Cup of Nations

The growth of International football has a surprising boost this month, especially in the African continent. The Confederation of African Football have verified the executive committee has passed a resolution to enlarge the Africa Cup of Nations from 16 teams to 24 and change the biennial championship .

CAF chosen to change the continental showpiece out of January-February into June-July, even though the championship will still occur every 2 decades, instead of moving into a four-year program.

Formerly, the African Cup clashed with a vital period for the European leagues, forcing many African American celebrities to choose between remaining with their clubs, their companies, and representing their countries. Many, like seven of Cameroon’s leading players at this year’s African Cup in Gabon, choose club over country to the detriment of the Cup of Nations.

An announcement printed on the confederation’s site, after the two-day CAF Symposium in Skhirat, near Rabat, supported the tournament growth and dismissed any suggestion that the contest would occur beyond Africa, as was suggested throughout the summit.

The summertime change eradicates a longstanding difficulty involving CAF and European nightclubs unhappy with losing lots of the African American players to get a month of this year every calendar year.  It has always been a huge problem for many of the biggest clubs who have many African stars in their teams.    Checking out Match of the Day whilst relaxing on holiday can be dissapointment when half the players are missing – Article – Watching British TV in Spain..

Likewise, whilst CAF’s inter-club contests — the CAF Champions League and Confederation Cup — won’t be enlarged again, the confederation have opted to change them into an August-May calendar, instead of within one calendar year.

This change further brings African football in accord with the European game, although various questions remain unanswered from the symposium, with lots of the continent’s nations unable to boast the infrastructure to host 16-team Nations Cups, let alone an expanded 24-team tournament.

Elsewhere, CAF confirmed that the working group had made a decision to raise indemnities to referees, organise zonal Nations Cup qualifiers for the tournament at age-grade levels, and improve international partnerships and relations between CAF, its member associations, national governments and the African Union.

John Williams

Irish Blogger