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CAF Expands AFCON To 24 Teams, Moves Date To June/July

       The Confederation of African Football has approved the expansion of the Africa Cup of Nations tournament from 16 teams to 24 beginning with the 2019 edition.
The resolve was taken during CAF’s executive committee held on Thursday in Rabat, capital of Morocco.
The expansion is the first since the biennial tournament began in 1996.

As part of the key issues discussed during the CAF meeting, the tournament was also shifted from its traditional January-February to June-July, bringing the continental calendar in line with the European football.
The decision comes as a relief to European clubs and Europe-based players, who will now avoid the regular player vs. club wrangles that affect many of the continent’s overseas players during Afcon years.
The tournament will remain every two years, rather than switch to every four years, as the European Championship and the FIFA World Cup.
With a view to improve international partnership and strengthen African football, CAF promised to endorse “the principle of creating a framework for cooperation with legendary African footballers and their greater involvement in CAF activities.”
The expansion also comes as a relief to the Super Eagles of Nigeria, who missed out on the last two editions of the AFCON, as they will have an opportunity to through despite a disappointing start to their campaign.
Gernot Rohr’s men lost 2-0 at home to the Bafana Bafana of South Africa in the first game of the qualifiers in June.

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