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Sport Premier League stars set for 'exceptional' Africa Cup of Nations

05:00  31 december  2021
05:00  31 december  2021 Source:   afp.com

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Premier League trio Mohamed Salah, Sadio Mane and Riyad Mahrez will be star attractions in Cameroon at the Africa Cup of Nations , which promises to be " exceptional " according to the top football offi… This is the fourth attempt by the central African state to play hosts after failing to meet 2019 deadlines and being replaced by Egypt, then losing out to unfavourable weather conditions and Covid-19. But as Liverpool forwards Salah and Mane, Manchester City winger Mahrez and other Premier League stars prepare for action, Confederation of African Football (CAF) president Patrice

The CAF Africa Cup of Nations kicks off on Friday 21 June and Premier League players are set to have a major say in who lifts the trophy. Thirty-four players registered with 16 of the 2018/19 or 2019/20 Premier League clubs have been selected to represent their countries at the tournament in Egypt. Cameroon are the defending champions and are aiming for a sixth title, aided by Brighton & Hove Albion 's Gaetan Bong and Fulham's Andre-Frank Zambo Anguissa , who both made 22 Premier League appearances last season. Four nations have a quartet of Premier League stars in their

Premier League trio Mohamed Salah, Sadio Mane and Riyad Mahrez will be star attractions in Cameroon at the Africa Cup of Nations, which promises to be "exceptional" according to the top football official in the continent.

Nigeria midfielder Wilfred Ndidi (L) of Leicester City chases Egypt star Mohamed Salah of Liverpool during a Premier League match on Tuesday. © Lindsey Parnaby Nigeria midfielder Wilfred Ndidi (L) of Leicester City chases Egypt star Mohamed Salah of Liverpool during a Premier League match on Tuesday. Algeria captain Riyad Mahrez (R) shoots for Manchester City during a Premier League match against Leicester City this December. © Anthony Devlin Algeria captain Riyad Mahrez (R) shoots for Manchester City during a Premier League match against Leicester City this December.

The 36-match group phase kicks off on January 9 at the newly built Olembe Stadium in Yaounde and the tournament concludes at the same 60,000-seat venue on February 6 with the final.

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Despite a mountain of uncertainty and having been postponed twice previously, the 2021 Africa Cup of Nations is now finally in sight, with a number of Premier League stars set for a potentially lengthy absence. The 33rd edition of the tournament gets underway on January 9, with host nation Cameroon kicking it off against Burkina Faso, before it draws to a close on Sunday, February 6. The earliest possible release date for any nation is January 20, when the groups come to an end. In what will be a difficult year for Premier League clubs to navigate, they received a timely boost last week as the

Despite a mountain of uncertainty and having been postponed twice beforehand, the 2021 Africa Cup of Nations is now lastly in sight, with a quantity of Premier League stars set for a doubtlessly prolonged absence. The thirty third version of the match will get underway on January 9, with host nation Cameroon kicking it off in opposition to Burkina Faso, earlier than it attracts to a detailed on Sunday, February 6. The earliest attainable launch date for any nation is January 20, when the teams come to an finish.

Champions Algeria top a 24-team cast that includes former title-holders Cameroon, Egypt, Ethiopia, Ghana, Ivory Coast, Morocco, Nigeria, Sudan and Tunisia.

While record seven-time winners Egypt will be making an unrivalled 25th appearance at the African football showpiece, Comoros and Gambia are debutants.

It is a wide-open competition with Algeria, unbeaten in 33 matches since late 2018, the logical favourites, but there are at least seven other nations capable of conquering Africa.

Cameroon, Egypt, Ivory Coast, Morocco, Nigeria, Senegal and Tunisia will believe they can go all the way while Burkina Faso, Ghana and Mali should not be underestimated.

Guinea, who rank among the outsiders, have been told by junta leader Mamady Doumbouya that they must repay state-funded preparation costs if they do not return to Conakry as champions.

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The Premier League is set to lose key players during the Africa Cup of Nations including Liverpool's Mohamed Salah and Sadio Mane and Chelsea's Edouard Mendy. In January, up to 39 players representing 16 different clubs will travel to Cameroon. The tournament officially starts on January 9 and concludes on February 6 — however, clubs will have to release their players after the Boxing Day fixtures. This means some players may miss a total of eight games across the Premier League and FA Cup should their countries reach the final.

Spread the love. Despite a mountain of uncertainty and having been postponed twice previously, the 2021 Africa Cup of Nations is now finally in sight, with a number of Premier League stars set for a potentially lengthy absence. The 33rd edition of the tournament gets underway on January 9, with host nation Cameroon kicking it off against Burkina Faso, before it draws to a close on Sunday, February 6. The earliest possible release date for any nation is January 20, when the groups come to an end. In what… Read the Full Article Here Dailymail.

The build-up to the biennial tournament has been marred by rumours that it would be postponed or cancelled owing to a worldwide coronavirus surge.

There have also been reports of Cameroon racing against the clock to complete preparations for the biggest African sporting event.

This is the fourth attempt by the central African state to play hosts after failing to meet 2019 deadlines and being replaced by Egypt, then losing out to unfavourable weather conditions and Covid-19.

But as Liverpool forwards Salah and Mane, Manchester City winger Mahrez and other Premier League stars prepare for action, Confederation of African Football (CAF) president Patrice Motsepe is upbeat.

"We are going to host with the people of Cameroon an exceptional tournament. It will be the most successful AFCON (Cup of Nations)," he said during a visit to Yaounde.

"The world will witness the best of African football and hospitality. We can host a football tournament as good as any in Europe."

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Africa ’s biggest soccer stars will be heading to Cameroon next month for the delayed 2021 Africa Cup of Nations . The last six AFCON tournaments have seen six different winners and there are plenty of teams that fancy their chances this year. The tournament comes in the middle of the European soccer …

Read Full Story. AS. The Africa Cup of Nations gets underway on 9 January and a number of LaLiga clubs will have to make do without key players for up to a month (the final will be played on 6 February). The European Clubs Association (ECA) have been reluctant to release their players to take part in the tournament due to the lack of Covid-19 protocols. Spanish clubs were faced with little option but to let their players go. Out of the top division, a total of 11 players will be involved from the group stage.

- Angry Eto'o -

Motsepe and Cameroon football legend Samuel Eto'o, now head of the national football federation, have been stung by suggestions that the Cup of Nations should be delayed or scrapped over the pandemic.

"If the Euros took place this year in the middle of a pandemic, with full stadiums in many cities, why would the Cup of Nations not be played in Cameroon?," asked Eto'o in a Canal+ interview.

"Or are people trying to say that, as always, Africans are not worth anything so we have to put up with it?"

As Cup of Nations organisers applied finishing touches to the six venues, from Douala on the Atlantic coast to Garoua in the north west, Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp stirred a verbal storm.

Klopp referred to the Cup of Nations as a "little tournament" during a press conference only to later say "I did not mean it like that".

Senegal coach and former star Aliou Cisse was furious, asking reporters in Dakar "Who does Klopp think he is?

"I respect Liverpool but not Klopp, who undermines African football. He is where he is today because of African footballers like Salah, Mane, (Naby) Keita and (Joel) Matip."

Having to free Africans during the European season is a sore point with managers and Napoli boss Luciano Spalletti labelled the Cup of Nations an "invisible monster".

The Serie A title challengers could lose Algerian Adam Ounas, Cameroonian Andre-Frank Zambo Anguissa, Nigerian Victor Osimhen and Senegalese Kalidou Koulibaly for close to six weeks.

Senegal-born Crystal Palace manager Patrick Vieira says the Cup of Nations "needs to be more respected because this tournament is as important as the Euros".

Another coach facing potential unhappiness is South Africa-born Pitso Mosimane from African and Egyptian club giants Al Ahly, nine of whose stars are in various Cameroon-bound squads.

Ahly are scheduled to compete at the Club World Cup in the UAE between February 3 and 12, creating a headache if any nation with Ahly stars reaches the early February semi-finals in Cameroon.

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