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Nigeria Battle Sierra Leone Again in 2023 AFCON Qualifiers

Exciting paths as draw is conducted for TotalEnergies Africa Cup of Nations, Côte d’Ivoire 2023

Gv general view during the AFCON 2023 qualifies group stage draw at Supersport Studio, Randburg on 19 April 2022

The draw for the TotalEnergies Africa Cup of Nations, Côte d’Ivoire 2023 was conducted in Johannesburg, South Africa on Tuesday evening, with exciting matches lined up towards next year’s tournament.

The draw was conducted by African football legends, former South Africa defender Lucas Radebe and ex Côte d’Ivoire forward Solomon Kalou.

Lucas Radebe and Salomon Kalou during the AFCON 2023 Qualifiers group stage draw at Supersport Studio, Randburg on 19 April 2022

Defending champions Senegal have been pooled in Group L where they will battle out with Benin, Mozambique and Rwanda.

Hosts Côte d’Ivoire are in Group H with Zambia, Comoros and Lesotho. Only one team will qualify from this group, alongside the hosts. Comoros who were one of the surprise packages at the delayed 2021 showpiece in Cameroon are seeking for a second consecutive qualification.

FULL DRAW

Group AGroup BGroup CGroup D
1NigeriaBurkina FasoCameroonEgypt
2Sierra LeoneCabo-VerdeKenya*Guinea
3Guinea-BissauTogoNamibieMalawi
4Sao Tome / MauritiusEswatiniBurundiEthiopia
Group EGroup FGroup GGroup H
1GhanaAlgeriaMaliCôte d’Ivoire
2MadagascarUgandaCongoZambia
3AngolaNigerThe GambiaComoros
4Central African Rep.TanzaniaSouth SudanLesotho
Group IGroup JGroup KGroup L
1DR CongoTunisiaMoroccoSenegal
2GabonEquatorial GuineaSouth AfricaBenin
3MauritaniaLibyaZimbabweMozambique
4SudanBotswanaLiberiaRwanda

Losing finalists from the 2021 showpiece Egypt have meanwhile been drawn in Pool D and Mohamed Salah will fancy another battle against club teammate Naby Keita as they have been drawn with Guinea, Malawi and Ethiopia.

There will be several derbies as well with East African rivals Uganda and Tanzania drawn together again, and they will face off in Group F together with 2019 champions Algeria and Niger.

Uganda and Tanzania faced off in the qualifiers for the 2019 showpiece where they drew 0-0 in the first leg in Kampala and Tanzania winning 3-0 in Dar es Salaam.

Tanzania also faced Algeria at the subsequent tournament in Egypt, where they suffered a 3-0 defeat.

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