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Exciting Fixtures Await as AFCON Enters Knockout Rounds

by Thomaz Oseghale
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Exciting Fixtures Await as AFCON Enters Knockout Rounds

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The Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) has reached the knockout stage, and fans around the continent are eagerly anticipating the mouthwatering fixtures that lie ahead. With teams vying for the prestigious TotalEnergies CAF AFCON trophy, the competition is heating up, and each match promises to be a thrilling encounter.

Nigeria vs Cameroon

Two giants of African football, Nigeria and Cameroon, will clash in a highly anticipated match. Despite a shaky start, both teams managed to secure their qualification to the round of 16 after their final group stage matches. Nigeria, in particular, is hoping to end a decade-long drought and lift the AFCON trophy. On the other hand, Cameroon’s coach, Rigobert Song, is under pressure to deliver a better performance after struggling in the group stage. This clash between two powerhouses is set to take place on Saturday, January 27, at the Felix Houphouet Boigny Stadium in Abidjan.

Cape Verde vs Mauritania

Cape Verde, the surprise package of the tournament, will face off against Mauritania in what promises to be an intriguing encounter. Cape Verde stunned everyone by going unbeaten in the group stage, defeating previous AFCON champions Egypt and Ghana. Their opponents, Mauritania, have already exceeded expectations by reaching this stage of the competition. Both teams have the opportunity to make history, and this match is scheduled for Monday, January 29, at the Felix Houphouet Boigny Stadium.

Equatorial Guinea vs Guinea

Equatorial Guinea, the unexpected group winners in a tough group that included hosts Côte D’Ivoire and Nigeria, will face Guinea in the round of 16. Guinea has been inconsistent in this year’s AFCON, but they will have to contend with Equatorial Guinea’s top scorer, Emilio Nsue. This clash will take place at the Alassane Ouattara Stadium on Sunday, January 28.

Angola vs Namibia

Namibia created history by qualifying for the knockout stage for the first time since their debut in 1998. They will face Angola, who topped their group with an impressive seven points. Angola, a two-time quarter-finalist, will be eager to continue their success in the competition. The match is scheduled to take place at the Stade de la paix in Bouake on January 27.

Mali vs Burkina Faso

Burkina Faso suffered a disappointing end to their group stage campaign with a 2-0 loss to Angola. In contrast, Mali remained unbeaten in all their group stage matches. Mali will have the advantage of playing at the Amadou Gon Coulibaly Stadium, where they have already played most of their group games. The match is set for January 29 at the Amadou Gon Coulibaly Stadium.

Egypt vs D.R Congo

Egypt, the most successful country in AFCON history, qualified for the knockout stage after drawing all their group games. Despite their underwhelming performance, the Pharaohs remain a formidable threat to any team they face. Their opponents, the Democratic Republic of Congo, will need to be at their best to overcome the Egyptian challenge. This match will be played on January 28 at the Laurent Pokou Stadium.

Senegal vs Côte d’Ivoire

Host nation Côte d’Ivoire managed to progress to the knockout stage after a disappointing 4-0 defeat on the final day. They now face a tough test against defending champions Senegal, who have a perfect record in the tournament so far. This match, which will be played at the Charles Konan Banny Stadium on January 29, promises to be a thrilling encounter.

Morocco vs South Africa

Morocco, semifinalists in the 2022 FIFA World Cup, are determined to win the TotalEnergies CAF AFCON Côte d’Ivoire 2023. However, they will face a strong challenge from South Africa in the round of 16. South Africa’s attacking duo of Percy Tau and Themba Zwane will pose a significant threat to the Moroccan defense. This clash is scheduled for January 30 at the Laurent Pokou Stadium.

The AFCON knockout stage is set to provide fans with thrilling matches as the teams battle it out for glory. With the tournament reaching its climax, football enthusiasts across the continent are eagerly awaiting the outcome of these exciting fixtures.


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