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Thursday, February 22, 2024

Nigeria/Benin bid in forefront as CAF picks host nations


The joint bid by Nigeria and neighbours Republic of Benin has loomed to the forefront in the race for hosting of the 36th edition of Africa Cup of Nations in 2027, with the Executive Committee of the Confederation of African Football to vote on the bids for both 2025 and 2027 in Cairo on Wednesday. The meeting will take place a Cairo Marriott Hotel in Zamalek area of downtown Cairo.

With Morocco virtually guaranteed the honour for the 2025 finals, the joint bid by Nigeria and Republic of Benin is in contest with Senegal, Egypt, Botswana and a tripartite arrangement of Uganda/Kenya/Tanzania for the 2027 event.

Algeria was a strong candidate for the 2027 event until the North African country withdrew from the race on Tuesday morning.

Guinea was originally selected to host the 2025 finals, on the same day that Cameroon and Cote d’Ivoire were given the mandates for the 2021 and 2023 editions respectively. But the Guineans fell behind badly in the preparations with infrastructure and other facilities unattended to. A new military government in place has not helped the country’s case, and CAF simply withdrew the hosting right from that country.

Nigeria has put forward the MKO Abiola Stadium, Abuja; Adokiye Amiesimaka Stadium, Port Harcourt; Godswill Akpabio Stadium, Uyo; Teslim Balogun Stadium, Lagos; Ahmadu Bello Stadium, Kaduna; Stephen Keshi Stadium, Asaba; Samuel Ogbemudia Stadium, Benin City and; Sani Abacha Stadium, Kano. In the Republic of Benin, the Stade Mathieu Kerekou in Cotonou and the Stade Charles de Gaulle in Porto Novo are listed.

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