Published on : 01/15/2020 – 14:51Modified : 01/15/2020 – 14:51
As expected, the Cameroonian Football Federation and CAF, which met on Wednesday January 15 in Yaoundé, seem to have found common ground so that CAN-2021, initially scheduled for summer, will be advanced by about six months. The dates from January 9 to February 6 are mentioned by an internal source.
It is an open secret, the formalization of which is a little closer. At the end of a meeting between the African Football Confederation (CAF) and the Cameroonian Football Federation (Fecafoot), common ground was found between the two parties for the 2021 African Cup of Nations, initially scheduled during the summer, or finally organized at the start of the year.
Information from internal sources, relayed mid-day by RFI, confirms the rumors that have multiplied in recent months. The two authorities would also have agreed on the exact date of the tournament (from January 9 to February 6) as well as on the official reason for this change of calendar: the risks linked to the rainy season in the region. Elements which, however, have not been confirmed from official sources, since they should be ratified at the next CAF executive committee, which will be held in Laayoune, Morocco, between January 28 and February 7.
The decision to line up behind the climatic difficulties of Cameroon at that time is not a surprise. Already at the start of the year, CAF President Ahmad Ahmad assured RFI that he had “always said that [la CAF] had to be flexible with respect to the weather “, recalling that” in Africa, summer in the north of the continent [n’avait] nothing to do with summer in the south. “
An almost inevitable shift
Earlier Wednesday, January 15, the Cameroonian Minister of Sports had also reminded of the potential troubles that could cause the rain if the competition is continued in summer.
Minister of Sports of #Cameroun: “Regarding the most favorable period for the organization of the # CAN2021, various hypotheses are open. We want to say straight away, here, loud and clear, in Cameroon, that throughout the territory, from North to South … (1/3)
– KALFA David (@DavidKalfa) January 15, 2020
But beyond these weather forecasts, another element probably made it possible for the two parties to agree: the announcement of Fifa, a few weeks ago, of the launch of the new formula of the Club World Cup. An edition extended to 24 teams, and which should take place between June 17 and July 4, 2021. A niche that was previously devoted to the next edition of the African Cup.
This new episode comes in any case to add to the tumultuous history of the Cameroon African Cup. Originally awarded to the country in 2014, it was to be held in 2019, but the organization of the tournament had finally been urgently entrusted to Egypt due to many delays in preparations. Cameroon then inherited the 2021 edition.