AFCON 2019: Meet The 24 Finalist For Egypt 2019

The West African nation would have hosted the competition for the first time since 1972. The Indomitable Lions were also the title holders after winning the previous edition.

On 30 November 2018, Cameroon was stripped of hosting the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations due to delays in the delivery of infrastructure, Boko Haram insurgency and the Anglophone Crisis. On 8 January 2019, Egypt were chosen by the CAF Executive Committee as the new host of the biennial football competition.

The 2019 Africa Cup of Nations in Egypt in June and July has been pushed back by a week to cater for the holy month of Ramadan, the tournament’s chief told AFP.

The four-week long event will now run from June 21-July 19 instead of June 15-July 13, said Mohamed Fadl, a former player who has been handed the task of supervising the continental showpiece by the Egyptian Football Association (EFA).

Also, the 2019 edition will be the first with 24 teams and will also the Video Assistant Referee (VAR ) introduced into AFCON, six venues, Cairo International Stadium and 30 June Stadium in Cairo, Alexandria Stadium in Alexandria, Suez Stadium in Suez, Ismailia Stadium in Ismailia and Al Salam Stadium in Cairo will host the games

This will be the fifth time Egypt will be hosts after 1959, 1974 1986 and 2006, hoping to be winners after coming second place to Cameroon who won the last edition in Gabon, Nigeria winners in 2013 will hope to return as winners after missing the last two editions.

Algeria will hope to make a statement, while Senegal with their array of stars led by Sadio Mane will look to break the jinx and win the ever elusive trophy, Zaha and Ivory Coast will seek to repeat the 2015 feat when they won it last. Ghana will want to revive their dwindling status as the powerhouse and Morocco will hope to post better performance than what they achieved in Russia last year.

GROUP A

EGYPT

Nickname: The Pharaohs

Appearance: 24th

Last Appearance: 2017

Best Performance: Winners (x7)

Coach: Javier Aguirre

Star: Mo Salah (Liverpool)

DR CONGO

Nickname: Leopards

Appearance: 19th

Last Appearance: 2017

Best Performance: Winners (x2 1968, 1974)

Coach: Florent Ibenge

Star: Cedric Bakambu (Villareal) , Yannick Bolaise(Everton)

UGANDA

Nickname: The Cranes

Appearance: 7th

Last Appearance: 1979

Best Performance: Winners (x1 1978)

Coach: Sébastien Desabre

Star: Farouk Miya (ND Gorica)

ZIMBABWE

Nickname: The Warriors

Appearance: 4th

Last Appearance: 2017

Best Performance: Group stage (2004, 2006,2017)

Coach: Sunday Chidzambwa

Star: Khama Billiat (Kaizers Chief), Knowledge Musona (Anderlecht)

GROUP B

NIGERIA

Nickname: Super Eagles

Appearance: 18th

Last Appearance: 2013

Best Performance: Winners (x3 1980, 1994, 2013)

Coach: Gernot Rohr

Star: John Obi Mikel (Middlesborough) (Alex Iwobi (Arsenal)

GUINEA

Nickname: Syli Nationales

Appearance: 11th

Last Appearance: 2015

Best Performance: Runners up (1976)

Coach: Paul Put

Star: Naby Keita (Liverpool)

MADAGASCAR

Nickname: Barea

Appearance: 1st

Last Appearance: Nil

Best Performance: Nil

Coach: Nicolas Dupuis

Star: Faneva Ima Andriastima (Clement foot)

BURUNDI

Nickname: The Swallows

Appearance: 1st

Last Appearance: Nil

Best Performance: Nil

Coach: Olivier Niyungelo

Star: Sadio Berahino(Stoke City)

GROUP C

SENEGAL

Nickname: The Lions of Teranga

Appearance: 15th

Last Appearance: 2017

Best Performance: Runner-up (2002)

Coach: Aliou Cisse

Star: Sadio Mane (Liverpool)

ALGERIA

Nickname: Desert Foxes

Appearance: 18th

Last Appearance: 2017

Best Performance: Winners (1990)

Coach: Djamel Belmadi

Star: Riyadh Mahrez (Manchester City)

KENYA

Nickname: Harambee Stars

Appearance: 6th

Last Appearance: 2004

Best Performance: Group stage

Coach: Sebastian Migne

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