There will be 24 teams in this year’s edition of the Afcon tournament, and several of the favourites should be pleased with their groups
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The draw for the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations (Afcon) finals was officially conducted on Friday night, with some exciting matches to look forward to.
The historic 24-team tournament will take place in Egypt between June and July 2019.
As the host nation, Egypt was always going to be in Group A, but they have been drawn against tough opponents, including DR Congo, Zimbabwe and Uganda.
Nigeria should be relatively happier with their opponents, with Burundi and Madagascar completing Group B alongside Guinea.
Burundi and Madagascar will be making their debuts at the Afcon finals, and given their inexperience on the continental stage, the Super Eagles would fancy their chances of making it past the group stages.
In Group C, Senegal and Algeria are strong favourites to progress as they were drawn against Tanzania and Kenya. The latter two teams will be excited to contest an East African ‘derby’.
However, neither of the two countries can be taken for granted simply because of their exploits during their respective qualifying campaigns.
The group of death is certainly where Bafana Bafana find themselves. Stuart Baxter’s men are in the same group with former Afcon winners Morocco and Cote d’Ivoire. Namibia, who were in the same group with South Africa over 21 years ago, complete Group D.
In Group E, Angola and Mauritania would consider themselves unfortunate to be drawn in the same group as Mali and Tunisia, but the pair cannot be taken lightly despite their positions in the latest Fifa rankings.
Lastly, Group F comprises of Guinea Bissau, Benin, Ghana and Cameroon.
Both Ghana and Cameroon are regarded as the powerhouses of African football given their pedigree in the Afcon tournament, and the majority of fans expect them to battle for the No.1 spot in Group F.
Group A: Egypt, Zimbabwe, DR Congo, Uganda
Group B: Burundi, Madagascar, Guinea, Nigeria
Group C: Tanzania, Algeria, Kenya, Senegal
Group D: South Africa, Namibia, Cote d’Ivoire, Morocco
Group E: Angola, Mauritania, Mali, Tunisia
Group F: Guinea Bissau, Benin, Ghana, Cameroon