Reigning African champions Algeria, as well as Nigeria, Senegal, Tunisia, Morocco and hosts Cameroun have been named top seeds for Tuesday’s 2021 Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) draw.
According to goal.com, the draw — set for Yaounde Conference Centre — will see the 24 participating teams zoned into six groups of four teams each for the competition that gets underway in January 2022.
Goal.com reports that based on their status as hosts, the Indomitable Lions of Cameroun have been allocated in Pot 1, while the Desert Foxes of Algeria – who emerged as champions of the 2019 edition – have been placed in Pot 2.
Senegal — The Lions of Teranga; the Carthage Eagles of Tunisia; Super Eagles of Nigeria and the Atlas Lions of Morocco were allocated Pot 3, Pot 4, Pot 5 ad Pot 6 respectively — according to their respective rankings in descending order.
In addition, the six pots representing the groups will be labelled Groups A to F.
While Cameroon will be pre-assigned to position A1 as hosts, the remaining five teams in pot 1 will automatically be drawn into position 1 of each group (B to F). The same procedure will be repeated for the remaining pots.
The 33rd edition of the biennial African football showpiece was due to begin on January 9, 2021, however, it was pushed back to January 2022 due to the CoVID-19 impact that crippled football-related activities.
Before the advent of CoVID-19, the competition was moved from June-July 2021 dates to January due to the unfavourable climate in the West African country during the summer months.
Meanwhile, Malawi Flames head coach Meck Mwase left on Friday to attend the draw and he told Fam.mw that knowing his opponents will help his technical panel to start earnest preparations for the AFCON.
He added that the draw will guide them on which type of players to should select and teams to engage for friendly matches as well as camping destinations.
“In football there are never easy draws and we will welcome whatever teams will be paired against,” he told Fam.mw.
The Flames, who in June lost 0-2 in a FIFA international friendly match against Tanzania, dropped three steps down from 115 to 118 on the FIFA rankings and are on position 30 on the continental list.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :