Cairo. African soccer legends Khalilou Fadiga (Senegal), Mahmoud ‘Bibo’ El Khatib (Egypt), Nwankwo Kanu, (Nigeria), Rabah ‘Mustapha’ Madjer (Algeria) and Samuel Eto’o (Cameroon) have had they say on the draw for 2021 Total Africa Cups of Nations qualifiers.
The five along with former Ghana Black Stars legend Anthony Baffoe, now Caf Deputy Secretary General, Football Development conducted the draw at Marriot Hotel in Zamalek, Cairo on Friday.
Fadiga, 44, a member of the Senegal team that featured in 2002 World Cup in Japan and South Korea said all the groups are well balanced and have opportunity to progress from their respective pools.
El Khatib ‘Bibo’ concurred with Fadiga that all team are balanced.
Kanu, a two-time Africa Ballon d’Or (1996, 1999) winner was more patriotic saying despite a difficult group, the Super Eagles will advance.
Madjer, an African Footballer of the Year 1987 and Best Player of the Africa Cup of Nations 1990 when the Desert Warriors won the title, is looking forward to Cape Verde Islands beating Cameroon.
Samuel Eto’o, a four-time Africa Ballon d’Or winner, said the days of small teams and minnows are long gone as all the 12 groups were open.
Senegal is the only team yet to taste Afcon glory amongst the quartet and their latest fall to Algeria in Friday’s 2019 final will pump them up to break their jinx.
THE AFRICA CUP OF NATIONS - CAMEROON 2021 DRAW
Liberia vs. Chad
Winner will remain in A4
South Sudan vs. Seychelles
Winner will remain in B4
Mauritius vs. Sao Tome & Principe
Winner will remain in C4
Djibouti vs. The Gambia
Winner will remain in D4
A: Mali, Guinea, Namibia, Liberia or Chad
B: Burkina Faso, Uganda, Malawi, South
Sudan or Seychelles
C: Ghana, South Africa, Sudan, Mauritius
or Sao Tome & Principe
D: Democratic Republic of Congo, Gabon,
Angola, Djibouti or Gambia
E: Morocco, Mauritania, Central African
F: Cameroon, Cape Verde Islands,
G: Egypt, Kenya, Togo, Comoros Islands,
H: Algeria, Zambia, Zimbabwe, Botswana
I: Senegal, Congo, Guinea Bissau,
J: Tunisia, Libya, Equatorial Guinea,
K: Cote D’Ivoire, Niger, Madagascar,
L: Nigeria, Benin, Sierra Leone, Lesotho
Note: The four preliminary ties will be played in October and the group phase kicks off the following month with two rounds. The winners and runners-up will qualify from each group except in Group F where Cameroon automatically qualify as hosts with the highest placed of the other three teams.
Uganda vs Burkina Faso
Burkina Faso 2 wins
Uganda vs Malawi
Uganda 14 wins
Malawi 8 wins