Wednesday marks the final round of qualifying for the African Nations Cup. It will now take place in Equatorial Guinea between 17 January to 8 February next year as Morocco were officially removed as hosts due to their reluctance of hosting the tournament due to fear of the ebola epidemic. Six places are still up for grabs prior to Wednesday’s fixtures.
Here is a breakdown of the groups and matches (all times U.S Eastern):
– Group winners, runners-up and the best 3rd place team qualify for the final tournament.
– Tiebreakers are determined on a head-to-head basis (points between the teams; goal difference; away goals; followed by goal difference in all games; and goals scored).
1. South Africa…..11pts
12:00pm Nigeria v South Africa
12:00pm Sudan v Congo
– Nigeria hold the tiebreaker over Congo as they both shared road victories but Nigeria have a superior goal difference in those two matches (4-3). So Nigeria need a victory or to at least match Congo’s result in Sudan. South Africa have already qualified.
11:00am Ethiopia v Malawi
11:00am Mali v Algeria (LIVE on beinsportsconnect.tv)
– Algeria have qualified. An Ethiopia win and Mali loss would actually place 3 teams on 6 points and goal difference would come into play. In case of two draws on Wednesday, Mali & Malawi shared 2-0 home wins so the tiebreaker would go to overall goal-difference which is clearly in Mali’s favor. Malawi also have a chance to qualify as the best 3rd place team.
1. Burkina Faso…..10pts.
1:00pm Burkina Faso v Angola
1:00pm Gabon v Lesotho
– Burkina Faso and Gabon have already assured their places in the final tournament. Angola need a win and many other scenarios to go their way to finish as the best 3rd place team.
2. Ivory Coast…..9pts.
3. DR Congo…..6pts.
4. Sierra Leone…..1pts.
9:00am Ivory Coast v Cameroon (LIVE beINSport, beIÑ & DishWorld)
9:00am DR Congo v Sierra Leone
– The important thing to keep in mind here is that DR Congo hold the tiebreaker over Ivory Coast (away goals head-to-head) so Cameroon cannot afford to slip up at home to a Cameroon side that has already qualified. Also worth noting, the 3rd place team here would very much be in consideration for a final’s berth.
11:00am Ghana v Togo (LIVE beINSport, beIÑ & DishWorld)
11:00am Guinea v Uganda
– A group where none have officially qualified and all four teams are still in the running. The combinations are plenty. One fact worth keeping in mind, Uganda have beaten Guinea 2-0 in their first meeting so if a tiebreaker is looked at for only those two teams, Uganda have the advantage depending on Wednesday’s result.
1. Cape Verde…..12pts.
11:00am Niger v Mozambique
11:00am Zambia v Cape Verde (LIVE on beinsportsconnect.tv)
– Zambia hold the tiebreaker over Mozambique so this group is over. Cape Verde and Zambia advance. However, Mozambique have an outside chance to claim the best 3rd place overall.
2:00pm Senegal v Botswana
2:00pm Tunisia v Egypt
– Tunisia and Senegal are heading to the final tournament. But Egypt are still in the hunt for the best 3rd place team.
CURRENT 3RD PLACE RANKINGS:
1. Guinea…..7pts (0 Goal Difference)
2. Congo…..7pts. (-1)
3. Egypt…..6pts. (0)
4. DR Congo…..6pts. (-1)
5. Malawi…..6pts. (-4)
6. Angola…..5pts. (0)
7. Mozambique…..5pts. (0)
Edward Perovic is the publisher of soccertvblog.com – a source for schedules and US TV information for major European Leagues and International competitions.
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