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The 2024 Africa Cup of Nations is on its way – or should that be 2023? Technically, this is the 2023 AFCON but the competition was moved to January 2024 because of worries about summer weather in Ivory Coast.

Regardless of what you want to call it, AFCON promises to be a fantastic tournament once again. Senegal will defend their crown, having won for the first time in 2022 (though that, too, was technically the 2021 edition).

So, we at Football FanCast have provided you with everything you need to know about AFCON 2024, then, as countries prepare to compete once again.

When is the next AFCON?


Well, this was supposed to take place across June and July – a move made a few years ago in order to end the clash with European club competitions. But because of concerns around the Ivory Coast and its summer weather, the decision was made to move the tournament to January 2024.

And so this is sort of AFCON 2023 but we’re confident people will refer to it as AFCON 2024. Certainly confusing, though!

It all kicks off on the 13th of January 2024, so around the time European football restarts after the winter break.

When does AFCON 2024 finish?


February 13th. The tournament will run for around one month, with the final scheduled for February 13th in Abidjan, Ivory Coast. That’s the latest a final has occurred when taking place mid-season – last time, things finished on February 6th.

That is offset a little by a slightly later start but it’s still notable that things will run a week longer into the season.

How long is AFCON 2024?


Fans of clubs with star African players always feel this tournament drags on forever. It is actually under a month long, though.

Things start on January 13th next year and will run until February 11th. Of course, how long players are at the tournament for entirely depends on how their nation performs. Make the final and they’re gone for nearly a month. Early exit? Perhaps players will return after just a few weeks.

All in all, then, this tournament runs for 30 days. It’s actually one of the longest editions yet, in fact.

Where is AFCON 2024 taking place?


Just about everything to do with AFCON is complex. The host nation, though, bumps things up to another level.

So this tournament was supposed to be in Guinea. However, Cameroon were stripped of their rights to host the 2019 edition back before that started as they weren’t properly prepared. They struck a deal to instead host in 2021, which meant the original 2021 hosts – Ivory Coast – would be pushed back to 2023.

Of course, this tournament isn’t even taking place in 2023 now, so essentially nothing about the original plan is in place. It will now happen in Ivory Coast, though. Guinea will have the honours in 2025.

When are the AFCON 2024 qualifiers?


Qualification has seen 52 nations battle it out since March 23rd, 2022 for a place in the competition. It’s not quite done yet, however – things will finally wrap up on September 12th, 2023.

The vast majority of teams are already in, with 17 qualified as of right now. That will bump up to 24 by the end of next week, though, as we learn exactly who will compete in Ivory Coast early next year.

Who has qualified for AFCON 2024?


Ivory Coast



South Africa


Burkina Faso




Equatorial Guinea



Cape Verde





17 countries are currently down as in, but that will grow to 24 by September 12th. Ivory Coast were technically the first team to qualify, of course, as they’re hosting the tournament.

March then saw Morocco, Algeria, South Africa, Senegal, Burkina Faso and Tunisia confirm their places. Egypt, Zambia, Equatorial Guinea, Nigeria, Guinea-Bissau, Cape Verde, Mali and Guinea then followed suit back in June this year.

Ghana and Angola just booked their own places, too, while seven more teams will do the same soon.

Who is the top scorer in AFCON qualifying?


Plenty of elite forwards have competed in qualifying for this one, with former teammates Mohamed Salah and Sadio Mané standing out as two of the absolute best. Neither, though, top the charts for scoring this time around.

Instead, Napoli star Victor Osimhen leads the way with seven goals. Mané is just behind him with five of his own – Salah has only managed two.

Osimhen, of course, was sensational for Napoli last season as they won Serie A. He’s widely tipped to be the top scorer at the actual tournament proper, too, and we certainly wouldn’t bet against him.

Which Premier League players are going to AFCON?


African players are all over the Premier League, with more featuring than ever before. Of course, that means just about every club will be missing at least one player come January.

Now, a few teams will miss one not-so-important player. Then there’s Liverpool, who will have to do without Mohamed Salah midway through the campaign. Nottingham Forest are a notable one, too – they’ll potentially have seven players at AFCON this season.

In all, though, there are too many to mention in an article like this. Fortunately, we’ve got this easy cheat sheet to see exactly which clubs will be seeing an absence and who could be off.

Who won the last AFCON?


Senegal were the winners last time out, winning the tournament for the inaugural time. It was a long time coming, too – they’ve consistently had one of the best sides for nearly two decades.

The final was a particularly notable one, too, as it saw Sadio Mané come up against then-Liverpool teammate Mohamed Salah. The two forwards were seen as the two best players at the tournament, though neither had an international trophy to his name.

However, the two forwards couldn’t find a way to goal. In fact, no one could and the final finished 0-0 after extra time. Things went to penalties and it was Mané who stepped up to seal the win after missing a penalty in the original 90 minutes. Notably, Salah was supposed to take no.5 for Egypt but never got the chance as Senegal wrapped things up 4-2.

Who are the favourites to win AFCON 2024?


It’s difficult to name an outright favourite as the group stage hasn’t been drawn that – the right or wrong group can push a team over the edge here. But there are certainly a few teams that stand out.

Senegal will draw eyes, of course. They won the competition in 2022 and boast several star names – though, it’s worth mentioning that three of them now play in Saudi Arabia and outside of the elite European leagues. Sadio Mané, Kalidou Koulibaly and Edouard Mendy all made that jump this summer.

Nigeria deserve a mention, too. Victor Osimhen is arguably the best African player right now and is certainly the star striker on display. His 31 goals for Napoli last season make him a massive threat and he’s the top scorer in qualifying.

Egypt boast Mohamed Salah. That’s enough on its own to make them a threat in this one. Salah helped them get to the final last time and will believe he can push them to one better this time around.

It’s Morocco who might have the best chance, however. They finished 4th at the World Cup last winter – the best of any African team in the competition’s history. Their squad is littered with players across the top European leagues, too, with Achraf Hakimi (Paris Saint-Germain), Sofyan Amrabat (Manchester United) and Youssef En-Nesyri (Sevilla) arguably the pick of the bunch.

Which country has won AFCON the most?


Egypt have won AFCON more than any other nation. They’ve lifted the trophy on seven separate occasions, including a three-peat from 2006 to 2010. Of course, they reached the final last time but lost to Senegal on penalties.

Next is Cameroon, who have managed to win the competition five times. Their most recent came in 2017 – 15 years after their previous win back in 2002. A third-place finish in 2021 put them very close to a sixth, too.

Ghana boast the next-best record with four – but we’re going back quite a ways here. They haven’t won the Cup of Nations since 1982 and have lost the final three times since then.

Nigeria are the fourth nation to win more than twice. They’ve picked up the trophy three times – the most recent of which was 2013.

Where to watch AFCON in the UK


This isn’t entirely clear just yet. Back in 2022, announcements for broadcasting rights came directly before the tournament, so we might not find out exactly who’s showing what until late this year.

Last time, Sky Sports and the BBC broadcast the event and we imagine they’ll head to queue to do the same this time around, too. Again, though, you’ll have to wait for confirmation on that one.

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