Monday Dec 23, 2019. 12:00
Confederation of African Football (CAF) president Ahmad has suggested that the 2021 Africa Cup of Nations will be moved back to January/February dates due to the unstable weather in June/July in Cameroon.
Ahmad told Inside World Football that CAF would abandon their plan to play the tournament in the middle of the year in order to protect the integrity of the competition.
“When we took the decision to move the Africa Cup of Nations to June, which we did for the last tournament in Egypt, we have always said that we need to have some flexibility over the dates,” Ahmad said.
“This is because of the different climatic conditions in the continent. I don’t know why the media has forgotten that this was discussed in detail, at the 2017 CAF symposium that we had in Morocco.
“In my view, it is not possible, because of the climatic conditions in Cameroon, to stage the Africa Cup of Nations in June/July. This is clear, so we must take a decision on the date.”
Moving the competition to January/February would also get CAF out of a hole as the new FIFA Club World Cup in 2021 would clash with their proposed mid-year dates, leaving the potential for many top stars to be unavailable.
This is also a worry with a January/February competition, which pits the competing nations against clubs in a crucial part of their season, but could be viewed as the lessor of two evils.