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AFCON 2025: Confederation Of Africa Football Reveals New Dates

AFCON 2025: Confederation Of Africa Football Reveals New Dates

The Confederation Of Africa Football has disclosed new dates for the 2025 Africa Cup Of Nation ( AFCON 2025) tournaments slated in Morocco.

The Africa Football governing body announced on Friday that the 2025 edition will played from December 21, 2025 to January 18, 2026.

The announcement was made by the CAF president, Patrice Motsepe on Friday afternoon after the Confederation Of Africa Football held a virtual executive meeting in Cairo, Egypt as he expressed believe the 2025 AFCON tournament will be a successful one.

“I am confident that CAF AFCON Morocco 2025 will be extremely successful and the best AFCON in the history this competition”

The 2025 AFCON tournament was initially scheduled to take place in the summer, which is June/July 2025, but CAF decided to shift the date to December/January to avoid the tournament fixtures clashing with maiden edition of FIFA World Cup slated to take place in June 15 and July 13, 2025. Furthermore, the reason the date of the 2025 AFCON was changed by CAF is to avoid it clashing with the UEFA champions league in Europe.

The new date for Morocco 2025 AFCON tournament will certainly upset many Premier League Clubs because of their busy Christmas and New year schedules during the period. This might make some English clubs which has most African stars as key players in their team not to release the players for their respective countries for the AFCON tournament.

The search for a perfect date for Africa Cup Of Nation games has been difficult for the Africa Football governing body. The tournament which are normally held from January/February has also faced similar criticism over it clashing with most European club games during the period, which includes the English Premier League, Spanish Laliga, Italian Seria A, German Bundesliga, French League One & others.

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The 2019 AFCON edition held in Egypt was played in the middle of the year, between June and July to avoid it clashing with European club fixtures. The subsequent editions held in Egypt, Cameroon and Ivory Coast were fixed to avoid rain disrupting the tournament being hosted in Central and West African sub-regions.

The 2025 AFCON qualifiers draws will be made on July 4 2024 in Johannesburg, South Africa with 48 nations hoping to qualify for the finals will be divided into 12 groups where nations who finished first and second in their groups will be automatically qualified for the 24 nation tournament won by Ivory Coast who also the host of 2023 edition after beating Nigeria 2-1 in the finals.

The edition host, Morocco will participate in the qualifiers games to gain competitive match practice but their automatic qualification for the 24 nation team tournament are already guaranteed.

The African Cup Of Nation is hosted every two years because it generates most of CAF revenue unlike European Nations championship, Copa America and Asian Cup that are held every four years.

Confederation Of Africa Football realised a total of $80milion (€75million) from the the just concluded 2023 AFCON tournament hosted in Ivory Coast in January and February this year, this was announced by CAF president Patrice Motsepe in a recent TV interview. The 2023 AFCON edition produced a huge revenue for CAF which was a dramatic increase from previous tournaments that produce average profit of about $4million according to CAF president.

Also postponed by CAF in their executive meeting help on Friday was the 2024 Women’s AFCON which will also take place in Morocco will not start from July 5 to July 26th 2025.

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Subsequently, new dates for the African Nations Championship (CHAN) a competition strictly for the home base African players which was originally slated to take place at the three East Africa nations Kenya, Tanzania and Uganda this year. The qualifying draw for the home base game has not be made and CAF has not issued a statement why they are yet to make the draws. Senegal won the last edition in Algeria after beating the host Algeria 5-4 on penalty shootouts in February 2023.

No report from CAF as regards the proposed second edition of African Football League (AFL) which would be known as African Super League.

The African Super League which involves 24 clubs in a mini league and knockout competition features high ranking clubs in Africa domestic Leagues. The tournament made it debut last year with just eight clubs side involved in a three round games.

The original format of the super League to be introduced where clubs are expected to play between 14 and 21 matches in a continent facing air travel challenges due to limited direct flights between countries.

The proposed super league by CAF has witnessed criticism in some sections by key stakeholders in the African Football. Chairman of a South African top flight club side Cape Town City John Comitis has come out to warn of the danger of the proposed super league to domestic football games in Africa.

“You can turn the lights off on domestic football if this (AFL) goes ahead,” he said.

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