The Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON), first held in 1957, is a competition that is older than the European Championship and every two years the best on the continent fight for the famous golden trophy.
Starting with two games during its opening tournament, AFCON has now grown into a celebration of African football with 52 games and 24 nations.
This year it will be held by the five-time winners of the Cameroon competition, who will fight for the title alongside the giants Nigeria, Egypt, Morocco, the Ivory Coast and the current champions Algeria.
Much of the preparation for this year’s edition has been tarred by controversy as managers and experts across the European league moan about their players going to the tournament.
Arsenal star Ian Wright has said the AFCON is not respected.
“There is no greater honor than representing your country. The reporting is completely racist.”
“Is there ever a tournament as disrespectful as the Africa Cup of Nations?” Wright said on Instagram.
“We played our Euros in 10 countries in the middle of a pandemic and there is no problem at all. But Cameroon, a single country that hosts a tournament, is a problem.
“Players are being asked if they will be honoring their national team call-outs. Imagine if this were an English player representing the Three Lions. Can you imagine the excitement?”
Premier League stars like Mohamed Salah, Sadio Mane, Riyad Mahrez, Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Wilfried Zaha will all be their nations at AFCON. represent
Leeds United, Newcastle United, Norwich City and Tottenham are the only PL clubs that don’t have a single player in Cameroon.
On which channel is the Africa Cup running?
The BBC and Sky Sports will be showing AFCON games live from January 9, 2022.
Sky will broadcast all 52 games in the tournament, from the group stage to the final.
In the meantime, 10 games will be freely available, including two quarter-finals, both the semi-finals and the final.
Highlights are expected to be shown on both Sky and the BBC and can also be streamed through their on-demand platforms.