US News The Comoros and the Gambia, "Blue" of the CAN 2021
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The Comoros and the Gambia are preparing to dispute in Cameroon the first can of their history. Before the kickoff of the event, which will be given on January 9, return on the course of these "blue" continental football.
The enlargement of the African Cup of the Nations of sixteen to twenty-four teams offers certain emerging countries the opportunity to know for the first time happiness (and honors) of a final phase. It is still necessary to work well, raise its level and enjoy it to slip into this Top 24 Continental. This was the case of Burundi, Madagascar and Mauritania in 2019. These three teams alone the last named will be again from the party next year in Cameroon. This time, it's the Comoros and the Gambia that will serve small new ones.
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For the small archipelago of the Indian Ocean, this qualification rewards the tenacity of a whole group. The frustrations of the previous qualifying campaign, which had seen the team fail on green carpet facing Cameroon, were hunted. The Comoros, second of a group also comprising Egypt, Kenya and Togo, these time gave the right to dream. To play the first CAN in the history of the young nation, Amir Abdou and his staff played the business card, while opening the group by small keys. Preparely out of the race at the World 2022, the coelacanthes repeated their ranges in friendly matches. Will this meticulous work allow the archipelago to do as well as Madagascar in 2019?
The work of two men
has been heading the team since 2014, Amir Abdou is convinced that it is possible. This 49-year-old Franco-Comorian is part of a virtually empty shell to give consistency to the dream of a whole people, whose set of components is represented in the team (Great Comore, but also Anjouan and Mohéli, the others. Islands of the Archipelago - If one sets apart Mayotte, remained in the French giron at the referendum on independence in 1974 and became a department and overseas region in 2009). Based on the children of the Comorian diaspora, often established in the Marseillaise region of which it is originally from, the coach, who has been cumulating since 2020 his duties with those of Coach Mauritanian Club of FC Nouadhibou, always has kept the course, despite the conditions not always obvious.
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It is also the case of the Gambia, the first exit of a hen where the Gabon were housed (also qualified), the DRC and the Angola. Not a thin exploit for this small country nested in Senegalese territory, whose team is among the least well-classified on the continent, with a 150th place in the FIFA ranking of December 2021. A promising generation - led by holders holders in Serie A As Omar Colley (Sampdoria) or Musa Barrow (Bologna), if you stick to the best known - found a reward for a few years under the national jersey. Also eliminated from the playoffs of the World 2022 before the hens phases, the scorpions have prepared in the discretion, multiplying the test gallops against very heterogeneous opponents.
Another common point with the Comoros, the Gambia chose to leave time at its technical supervision: in position since 2018, coach Tom Saintfiet (48 years old) has signed a new lease of five years after the qualification. Rose. Like his Comorian counterpart, the Belgian technician, great traveler before the LORD (he coach half a dozen national teams including Namibia and Togo before landing in Banjul), fired the quintessence of a reservoir players spread across Europe. If their respective profiles oppose them, the child of the country Amir Abdou and the migratory bird Tom Saintfiet share the approach to have managed as a club the national team they charge, knowing where they go without forgetting Where they come, in this case the depths of African football. An approach that will now undergo the fire test of a final phase.
What awaits them at the CAN:
paid in Group C, housed in Yaoundé, the Comoros will begin against Gabon, on January 10th. The coelacanths will then face Morocco on January 14, before concluding their first round against Ghana on 18.
as to the Gambia, it will evolve in Limbe in group F. Scorpions will encounter successively the Mauritania (January 12), the Mali (January 16) and Tunisia (January 20).
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