I won’t resign; my main mission is to qualify Ghana to the World Cup

Black Stars coach Milovan Rajevac has brushed off suggestions that he has to resign for the shambolic display by the Ghanaian team at the 2021 African Cup of Nation in Cameroun.

Coach Rajevac
According to the Serbian coach, he is on a mission to qualify Ghana to the 2022 World Cup in Qatar.

FULL LIST: Fixture dates, venues… ALL to know about AFCON 2022

The 33rd Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON), originally scheduled to hold in June and July 2021, will be played in Cameroon between January 9 and February 6, 2022.

Cameroon, the hosts, will take on Burkina Faso in the opening fixture at the new 60,000-seat Olembe Stadium in Yaounde, while Algeria, who would be looking to retain their 2019 crown, must conquer Equatorial Guinea, Ivory Coast, and Sierra Leone in group E.

The Augustine Eguavoen tutored Super Eagles side will also have Egypt and Sudan to subdue if they are keen to emulate the success of the 2013 winning team.

Here are the six groups, 24 participating sides, and group fixtures.

Group A: Cameroon (hosts), Burkina Faso, Cape Verde Islands, Ethiopia
Group B: Guinea, Malawi, Senegal, Zimbabwe
Group C: Comoros Islands, Gabon, Ghana, Morocco
Group D: Egypt, Guinea Bissau, Nigeria, Sudan
Group E: Algeria, Equatorial Guinea, Ivory Coast, Sierra Leone
Group F: Gambia, Mali, Mauritania, Tunisia
Group Fixtures
January 9: Matchday 1 on Sunday

4pm: Cameroon v Burkina Faso
7pm: Ethiopia v Cape Verde
January 10: Matchday 2 on Monday

1pm: Senegal v Zimbabwe
4pm: Guinea v Malawi
4pm: Morocco v Ghana
7pm: Comoros v Gabon
January 11: Matchday 3 on Tuesday

1pm: Algeria v Sierra Leone
4pm: Nigeria v Egypt
7pm: Sudan v Guinea Bissau
January 12: Matchday 4 on Wednesday

1pm: Tunisia v Mali
4pm: Mauritania v Gambia
7pm: Equatorial Guinea v Ivory Coast
January 13: Matchday 5

4pm: Cameroon v Ethiopia
7pm: Cape Verde v Burkina Faso
January 14: Matchday 6

1pm: Senegal v Guinea
4pm: Malawi v Zimbabwe
4pm: Morocco v Comoros
7pm: Gabon v Ghana
January 15: Matchday 7

4pm: Nigeria v Sudan
7pm: Guinea Bissau v Egypt
January 16: Matchday 8

1pm: Gambia v Mali
4pm: Ivory Coast v Sierra Leone
4pm: Tunisia v Mauritania
7pm: Algeria v Equitoria Guinea
January 17: Matchday 9

4pm: Burkina Faso v Ethiopia
4pm: Cape Verde v Cameroon
January 18: Matchday 10

4pm: Malawi v Senegal
4pm: Zimbabwe v Guinea
7pm: Gabon v Morocco
7pm: Ghana v Comoros
January 19: Matchday 11

7pm: Egypt v Sudan
7pm: Guinea Bissau v Nigeria
January 20: Matchday 12

4pm: Ivory Coast v Algeria
4pm: Sierra Leone v Equatorial Guinea
7pm: Gambia v Tunisia
7pm: Mali v Mauritania
Round of 16
R16 Match 1: January 23

4pm: Runner-up Group A vs Runner-up Group C at Limbe Stadium, Limbe
R16 Match 2: January 23

7pm: Winner Group D vs  3rd Group B/E/F at Roumdé Adjia Stadium, Garoua
R16 Match 4: January 24

4pm: Runner-up Group B vs Runner-up Group F at Kouekong Stadium, Bafoussam
R16 Match 3: January 24

7pm: Winner Group A vs  3rd Group C/D/E at Olembe Stadium, Yaoundé
R16 Match 5: January 25

4pm: Winner Group B vs  3rd Group A/C/D at Kouekong Stadium, Bafoussam
R16 Match 6: January 25

7pm: Winner Group C vs 3rd Group A/B/F at Ahmadou Ahidjo Stadium, Yaoundé
R16 Match 7: January 26

4pm: Winner Group E vs  Runner-up Group D at Japoma Stadium, Douala
R16 Match 8: January 26

7pm: Winner Group F vs  Runner-up Group E at Limbe Stadium, Limbe
Quarter-Final B: January 29

4pm: Winner R16-M4 vs  Winner R16-M3 at Japoma Stadium, Douala
Quarter-Final A: January 29

7pm: Winner R16-M1 vs Winner R16-M2 at Roumdé Adjia Stadium, Garoua
Quarter-Final C: January 30

4pm: Winner R16-M7 v Winner R16-M6 at Olembe Stadium, Yaoundé
Quarter-Final D: January 30

7pm: Winner R16-M5  vs  Winner R16-M8 at Japoma Stadium, Douala
SF 1: February 2

7pm: Winner QF A  vs  Winner QF D at Japoma Stadium, Douala
SF 2: February 3

7pm: Winner QF B  vs  Winner QF C at Olembe Stadium, Yaoundé
Third-place Match
February 6

5pm: Loser SF1  vs  Loser SF2 at Ahmadou Ahidjo Stadium, Yaoundé
February 6

7pm: Winner SF1 vs  Winner SF2 at Olembe Stadium, Yaoundé
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AFCON Starts Today, 5 Teams Likely To Win The Trophy

The Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) kicks off today, Sunday, 9th January 2022 in Cameroon. It is the 33rd edition. The finals is scheduled for Sunday, 6th February 2022.

For the first time in the competition’s history, all 52 matches will feature the use of a Video Assistant Referee (VAR).

Although a total of 24 nations are in the competition, this article looks at five nations (teams) who are favorites to win the AFCON 2022.

1. Senegal

Senegal has a star-studded front line led by Liverpool’s Sadio Mane. Defensively, they boast of Chelsea’s Edouard Mendy, Kalidou Koulibaly of Napoli and host of other great players. They are likely to recover from their 1-0 defeat to Algeria in the 2019 AFCON finals and claim the title.

2. Algeria

The defending champions boast of one of the greatest squad in this year’s AFCON. Led by Manchester City’s Riyad Mahrez and forward Baghdad Bounedjah, the Algerians had a memorable 2019 run to their second AFCON crown. They are the second favorite to win the competition.

3. Ivory Coast

They boast of Eric Bailly of Manchester United, Arsenal’s Nicolas Pepe, Wilfred Zaha of Crystal Palace and other talented squad. Ivory Coast last won the competition in 2015 after beating Ghana on penalties. They are also favorites to win this year competition.

4. Egypt 

: The Pharaohs of Egypt have won the tournament seven times and are the most successful team in the history of AFCON. In attack, they have arguably the best player in the world right now, Mohamed Salah. Given their history, they are also fourth favorite to win the trophy.

5. Cameroon

The Indomitable Lions, who last won the tournament in 2017, will be one of 24 nations looking to succeed Algeria as African champions. Hosting the competition also gives them the boost to win the tournament.

Team Cameroon is headed for a 20th AFCON participation and will be bidding for a sixth title.

Barcelona drops after Bayern Humiliation.

FC Barcelona has dropped from the UEFA champions League to the UEFA Europa League after loosing 3-0 to Bayern Munich.

The German Champions who had already secured qualification to the knockout stage piled more misery to the Catalans in the last group game the 2021/2022 UCL.

Barcelona humiliating defeats coupled with Benfica’s win over Dynamo Kiev makes the Catalans miss the knockout stage for the first time in 17 seasons, having last missed out in 2004 season.

The five times winners will now partake in Thursday night football in the year 2022.

2022 WCQ: FIFA throws out South Africa’s protest over Ghana defeat

Black Stars

Fifa has ruled an appeal from South Africa relating to a decisive 2022 World Cup qualifying match against Ghana is inadmissible.

Bafana Bafana had claimed they were “robbed” after their 1-0 defeat last month, with the only goal in the game scored from a first-half penalty.

The South Africa Football Association (Safa) included allegations of “match-fixing, match manipulation including corruption and bribery” when it lodged a complaint with football’s world governing body.

South Africa had needed a draw to reach Africa’s World Cup play-offs, but the result meant Ghana progressed at their expense on goals scored.

Safa president Danny Jordaan later claimed there was a betting spike during the qualifier, which took place in Cape Coast on 14 November.

Meanwhile, an appeal by Benin about substitutions made by DR Congo in another crunch qualifier on the same day has also been thrown out.

Fifa’s disciplinary committee declared both protests inadmissible as they did not meet relevant requirements – but also added the decisions are subject to appeal.

While Fifa referred to its Disciplinary Code and the regulations for the World Cup qualifiers, it did not offer the exact reasons for the rulings.

It means, as it stands, that Ghana and DR Congo will be in January’s draw for the African World Cup play-offs, with two-legged ties to decide the continent’s five representatives in Qatar set to be played in March.

“We have received the decision without details and will request the reasons [from Fifa] and consider our options,” Safa chief executive Tebogo Motlanthe said in a statement on Friday.

Benin’s protest concerned their 2-0 defeat by DR Congo – a result which saw the Leopards qualify ahead of Benin, who had needed a win to advance.

The appeal was about the fact that DR Congo made a total of four substitutions across four windows during the match.

Under current Fifa regulations for international games, teams are allowed to make up to five substitutes but only during three windows in the game.