Published on : 18/11/2020 – 20:20
From November 11 to 17, the African teams had an appointment to compete in the CAN-2021 qualifiers. Some have already won their ticket to Cameroon. Others, like Togo, have already been eliminated.
Covid-19 requires, the CAN-2021 will take place … in January 2022. After the third and fourth days of qualifying which took place from November 11 to 17, we now know the names of five of the 24 teams that took part will face in the final phase in Cameroon.
• Five teams are qualified:
Senegal and Algeria have kept their rank. The duo of finalists for the 2019 edition already have their ticket to the Africa Cup.
Authors of a faultless with four victories in as many matches, the Lions of Teranga were the first to qualify on the field, Sunday, November 15, going to win 1 to 0 in Guinea-Bissau thanks to a goal from Sadio Mane.
Algeria joined them the next day by drawing a draw against Zimbabwe (2-2). The Algerians took the lead in this match thanks to Montpellier striker Andy Delort, before captain Riyad Mahrez doubled the lead. The Fennecs then lowered their feet until Zimbabwe equalized in the final minutes.
Mali and Tunisia qualified in their respective matches on Tuesday, November 17. The Eagles of Mali won 2-1 in Namibia while those of Carthage suffered against Tanzania to get a draw.
These four teams therefore join Cameroon, automatically qualified as host country.
• Exit Togo, Chad and Sao Tome and Principe
Whatever their results in the last two days of qualifying, three countries have already said goodbye to qualifying for the African Cup finals. For Chad and Sao Tome and Principe, the editions follow and resemble each other: they will still have to wait to discover the first final phase of their history.
On the other hand, for Togo, this new elimination sounds like a humiliation. Already absent from the 2019 edition, their 3-1 defeat to Egypt sounded the death knell for their ambitions to return to the fore. This exit from the track could cost French coach Claude Leroy his job.
• For the other teams, everything remains to be done
Group A: Guinea should inherit the second qualifying ticket behind Mali, barring an incident. The team are five points ahead of their Namibian pursuer.
Group B: Burkina Faso (8 points) and Uganda (7 points) are ideally placed. However, a misstep could benefit Malawi (4 points), or even South Sudan.
Group C: same scenario for South Africa and Ghana, who took an option on qualifying with their three wins in four matches. Sudan remains in ambush.
Group D: after a sluggish start in the qualifiers and three games without a win, the DR Congo finally revived by winning in Angola (1-0). Gambia, Gabon, DR Congo… Group D is held in a pocket square. Only Angola seems already out of the race.
Group E: Morocco already has a foothold in Cameroon. The Atlas Lions dominate the group and already have 10 points. A draw will therefore suffice for them to qualify. Behind, it is much closer between Mauritania, Burundi and the Central African Republic.
Group F: already qualified because of its status as an organizing country, Cameroon is preparing ideally. He prances at the head of his group and crunched Mozambique 2-0. The second qualifying place in the group will be played between his unfortunate opponent, Rwanda and Cape Verde. The latter two neutralized each other in their own clash (0-0).
Group G : By eliminating Togo, Egypt has almost assured its qualification. Behind the Pharaohs, the astonishing Comorians may hold the first qualification in their history for an African Cup final after their draw against Kenya (1-1).
Group H: With Algeria already qualified, the second qualifying place will result in a three-way match between Zimbabwe, Botswana and Zambia. Zimbabwe advantage: they are already in the lead with five points and have already played against the leader and Algerian scarecrow.
Group I: behind Senegal, the second ticket seemed promised in Congo but the Red Devils had the bad taste to concede the draw against Eswatini. Guinea-Bissau could benefit from this thanks to a more favorable timetable.
Group J: Tunisia is qualified. The second ticket should be played between Tanzania and Equatorial Guinea, who will face each other from the 5e day on March 22.
Group K: Côte d’Ivoire and Madagascar neutralized each other (1-1) while Ethiopia outclassed Niger (3-0). Result: no team is yet safe in this group.
Group L: the group’s two posters, Lesotho-Benin and Sierra-Leone – Nigeria, ended in a goalless draw. Nigeria (8 points) and Benin (7 points), however, have the advantage in the race for qualification.
The next day of playoffs will take place at the end of March 2021.