BBC SPORT Arabic Spanish Russian Chinese
BBCi NEWS   SPORT   WEATHER   WORLD SERVICE   A-Z INDEX    SEARCH 

BBC Sport
 You are in: Football: Africa: Cup of Nations  
Sport Front Page
-------------------
Football
Teams
Statistics
FA Cup
Eng Prem
Internationals
Champions League
Uefa Cup
Eng Div 1
Eng Div 2
Eng Div 3
Eng Conf
Scot Prem
Scottish Cup
Scot Div 1
Scot Div 2
Scot Div 3
Europe
Africa
League of Wales
Cricket
Rugby Union
Rugby League
Tennis
Golf
Motorsport
Boxing
Athletics
Other Sports
-------------------
Special Events
-------------------
Sports Talk
-------------------
BBC Pundits
TV & Radio
Question of Sport
-------------------
Photo Galleries
Funny Old Game
-------------------
Around The UK: 
N Ireland
Scotland
Wales

BBC Sport Academy
BBC News
BBC Weather
SERVICES
-------------
LANGUAGES
EDITIONS

  Wednesday, 4 September, 2002, 12:51 GMT 13:51 UK
New era for Nations Cup
The South African team
South Africa fight Ivory Coast for a final berth

Follow all the action here LIVE on Saturday and Sunday with commentaries on our feature matches and results and match analysis from every game.

FEATURE MATCHES:
Ivory Coast v South Africa, 1400GMT Sunday (Abidjan)

Angola v Nigeria, 1400GMT Sunday (Luanda)


Africa's Nations Cup competition begins a new era this weekend.

For the first time preliminary matches have been done away with and the minnows will go straight up against the giants for a place in the finals in Tunisia in 2004.

It will mean more matches and a better chance for the lesser known countries to make their mark on the continental competition.

Also, for the first time the draw for the competition was not conducted with geographical consideration as the top priority.

Instead Caf seeded all the countries in different categories and then drew out the pairings.

It has meant several potentially exciting combinations, arguably one of the most attractive will see Ivory Coast and South Africa chasing just one qualifying berth from their group.

Nigeria v Ghana in the last Nations Cup
Nigeria have to get past the improving Angola
Nigeria were also handed a tough assignment with the ever-improving Angola and Malawi in their group.

However Senegal, the runners-up at the last Nations Cup finals in Mali, should barely raise a sweat in getting past Gambia and Lesotho in their group.

A fourth participant Sao Tome has since pulled out because of financial concerns, joining Djibouti and Guinea Bissau as those who have withdrawn.

Somalia was the only country that did not enter the preliminaries.

The winners of each of the 13 groups will join hosts Tunisia and holders Cameroon in the finals in 2004.

The other place will be taken up by the best runner-up in groups 2-9, determined by the side with the most number of points.

So all bodes well for a potentially explosive and competitive round of qualifying, which will conclude in July 2003.


Group 1

Group 2

Group 3

Group 4

Group 5

Group 6

Group 7

Group 8

Group 9

Group 10

Group 11

Group 12

Group 13
Links to more Cup of Nations stories are at the foot of the page.


E-mail this story to a friend

Links to more Cup of Nations stories

© BBC ^^ Back to top

Sport Front Page | Football | Cricket | Rugby Union | Rugby League |
Tennis | Golf | Motorsport | Boxing | Athletics | Other Sports |
Special Events | Sports Talk | BBC Pundits | TV & Radio | Question of Sport |
Photo Galleries | Funny Old Game | N Ireland | Scotland | Wales