AFCON qualification to conclude over the next seven days

AFCON qualification to conclude over the next seven days
Juan Micha, coach of Equatorial Guinea

by Graeme Jackson

Wednesday Sep 06, 2023. 11:00

The final steps to the 2023 Africa Cup of Nations in the Ivory Coast will be taken over the next seven days, with 22 qualification matches played from Wednesday 6 to Tuesday 12 September.

The AFCON already has 15 of its 24 slots filled, and the identity of the final nine will be revealed in the next week, with the likes of DR Congo, Ghana, Angola, Tanzania, Uganda, Gambia, Mauritania and Gabon looking to secure participation in the tournament finals.

The action gets underway on Wednesday evening with Libya hosting Equatorial Guinea in an effective dead-rubber at the Benina Martyrs Stadium in Benghazi.

The Mediterranean Knights have already been eliminated but could avoid the wooden spoon in Group J, while Nzalang Nacional have secured qualification but could guarantee top spot ahead of heavyweights Tunisia – which would be quite the statement as they looked to build on a quarterfinal showing at the last AFCON in early 2022.

The teams have clashed in five previous matches, with the West Africans winning four times compared to once for the North Africans.

They last met in June 2022 in Malabo, with Equatorial Guinea winning 2-0 thanks to an own goal from Mohammed Al Tuhami and a penalty from Federico Bikoro.

AFCON fixtures, Wednesday 6 September

Times CAT

21:00: Libya v Equatorial Guinea

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