2025 AFCON Postponed Over Club World Cup Tournament

2025 AFCON Postponed Over Club World Cup Tournament

The 2025 edition of Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) will be delayed by six months, shifting to early 2026 in the same venue Morocco.

Originally slated for June, 2025, the tournament’s schedule conflicted with the expanded 32-team Club World Cup, set to place in the United States from June 15 to July 13.

Veron Mosengo-Omba, CAF’s general secretary, disclosed to the BBC that the AFCON would now be held at the beginning of 2026, citing significant scheduling challenges.

This postponement impacts Morocco’s plans to highlight its tourism sector and demonstrate its readiness to host major events ahead of the 2030 World Cup, which it will co-host with Portugal and Spain.

Mosengo-Omba emphasised player welfare concerns, noting the impracticality of athletes competing in both the Club World Cup and AFCON consecutively.

“For the men, we need to ensure that the dates we choose will be in the players’ best interests,” he said, adding that, “scheduling is a nightmare for everybody.”

Additionally, CAF faces criticism for not finalising dates for the 2024 Women’s Africa Cup of Nations (Wafcon), also set to be held in Morocco. Mosengo-Omba promised an announcement by the end of the month, hinting at a potential postponement to accommodate teams participating in the Olympics.

South Africa, the reigning Wafcon champions, are among those affected. “We are supposed to play this year, but we have teams engaged in the Olympics, so we have to find another date,” Mosengo-Omba explained. CAF is in discussions with UEFA, the European Club Association, and FIFA to identify a suitable date.

Further uncertainty surrounds the second edition of the African Football League, Africa’s new super league. While the first edition featured eight clubs competing in a two-month knockout format, CAF President Patrice Motsepe had promised an expansion to 24 teams for the next edition.

However, the African Champions League and Confederation Cup group stages will now occupy the same October to December period initially allocated to the African Football League.

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