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Africa Cup of Nations to go ahead despite European clubs’ concerns

Africa Cup of Nations to go ahead despite European clubs’ concerns
Africa Cup of Nations to go ahead despite European clubs’ concerns

The Confederation of African Football (CAF) have strongly dismissed reports that claim the Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) was going to be postponed or cancelled due to Coronavirus fears.

On Wednesday, it emerged that the European Club Association (ECA) sent a letter to FIFA Deputy Secretary General Mattias Grafstrom on Dec. 10, aiming to prevent Europe-based players from reporting to camp for the biennial continental tournament.

In the letter, sighted by AfroBallers, it details “three fundamental concerns for clubs when it comes to the release of players to national teams”. Those are ensuring that “every player’s wellbeing is protected”, “that clubs are not forced to be without players for club competition matches” and that all should be allowed to return to their clubs after the tournament “in a timely fashion, as per the applicable rules”.

“At present, these three principles are at risk of not being respected in connection with the upcoming January releases,” the letter said.

This fuelled speculation about whether next year’s competition would go ahead, but CAF general secretary Veron Mosengo-Omba has dismissed this reports, saying he is ‘not resting’ to make sure it happens.

He said: “The meetings were important in getting a level of understanding on the state of readiness in Cameroon.

“There is a lot of work that is being done. We have to continue with the same momentum. We cannot rest. We have to work around the clock.

“I’m not resting, the LOC cannot rest. CAF cannot rest. Everyone must join the efforts. We want to see a great TotalEnergies Africa Cup of Nations here in Cameroon in January next year.

“Together with the Minister of Sport, we discussed all the pending issues and the way forward.”

Afcon will be staged in Cameroon on 9 January 2022

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