The 2019 Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) also known as the Total Africa Cup of Nations, is slated to be the 32nd edition of the competition. It takes place every two years and is the primary business of the Confederation of African Football (CAF). The competitions hosting rights have been awarded to Egypt, and the tournament will be held from the 21st of June to the 19th of July.
The competition was initially to be hosted by Cameroon, which would have been history as Cameroon have not had the chance to facilitate the AFCON since 1972, but on the 30th of November 2018, Cameroon was stripped of the hosting rights to the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations.
The competition has also been moved from the initial dates of the 15th of June – the 13th of July to the 21st of June – the 19th of July because of the Ramadan fast. Unlike previous times, 24 teams will be contesting for the African football throne instead of the initial 16, which was one of the principle reasons why Cameroon was deprived of the hosting rights -for not having the infrastructural capacity to contain the high number of teams.
CAF in December took the hosting rights from Cameroon on the grounds of delay in preparations. Egypt was picked in January as the best substitute ahead of South-Africa since they had better infrastructure to hold the new 24 team AFCON.
Three countries are making their first appearance at the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations. Burundi, Mauritania and Madagascar will grace Africa biggest football competition for the first time.
Stadiums hosting AFCON 2019 Egypt
Stadiums hosting AFCON 2019 Egypt – The AFCON 2019 matches will be played in Cairo, Al Salam Stadium, the 30th of June Stadium, Alexandria, Ismailia, and Suez stadiums. The country’s football governing body has slated six stadiums for the competition. The details on the six stadiums expected to host the tournament are provided below.
Cairo International Stadium
Situated in Nasr City, Giza, Cairo International stadium Opened in 1960. It is the memorable home ground for Al-Ahly, Zamalek and the Egyptian national team. It is the biggest arena in the capital with a capacity of 75,000, and it will host the opening game and the Final. This stadium has facilitated many major competitions like the 2009 FIFA U-20 World Cup, 1991 All-Africa Games and club derbies between Al-Ahly and Zamalek. The Cario stadium will host the Group A nations( Egypt, DR Congo, Uganda, and Zimbabwe)
They call it the home of soccer because the first football match ever played in the country was on its soil, even before the stadium was set up. Built in 1929, this stadium is regarded as Egypt and Africa’s oldest footballing arena. The stadium is home to local teams like Al Ittihad, Smouha, and Olympic Clu, while the city’s enthusiastic soccer fans occupy their 20,000 seats. The Alexandria stadium will host the Group B nations( Nigeria, Guinea, Madagascar, and Burundi)
The 30th of June Stadium
The 30th of June Stadium is a multi-purpose stadium that hosts football matches and athletics in Cario. The Egyptian Air Defences forces constructed this magnificent stadium. The 30th of June stadium is the main center of the Air Defense Sports Village. This stadium will host the Group C nations( Senegal, Algeria, Kenya, and Tanzania).
Al Salam Stadium
The Al Salam Stadium has risen to become an option to the Cairo International Stadium, and it facilitated numerous matches for Al-Ahly and Zamalek. The Al Salam Stadium opened in 2009 with a 30,000 seater capacity. The Al Salam Stadium will host the Group D nations( Morocco, Ivory Coast, Namibia, and South Africa)
This AFCON will be a historic moment for the people in Suez as their 27,000 seater stadium will host for the first time an international tournament. Opened in 1990, the stadium is the home ground of local teams such as Asmant El-Suweis, Petrojet, and Montakhab el-Suez. This stadium will host the Group E nations(Tunisia, Mali, Angola, and Mauritania)
This arena is known as the City of Football and Arts. Ismailia is one of Egypt’s most lovely towns, situated in the country’s northeast. On their 18,000-seater pitch, the fans will love watching African Football again. This stadium will host the Group F nations(Cameroun, Ghana, Benin, and Guinea-Bissau)