ACN Ghana 2008 qualifiers day 3 kicks off this weekend
The battles to earn a place in the MTN/CAF African Cup of Nations Ghana 2008 begin this weekend across the continent. A total of 22 matches in 12 groups will be decided in the day 3 of the qualifiers which began in September 2006.
Group one leaders, Cote d'Ivoire, will play away to Madagascar while Gabon takes rest as a result of Djibouti's withdrawal. There are only three teams in the group as a result of the withdrawal.
CAN 2006 Champions, Egypt, hosts Mauritania while Burundi visits Botswana in group 2. At the top with 4 points, Egypt will be without Ahly hit man Abou Treika due to injury. However, Coach Hassan Shahata has called up foreign-based players and new local ones to beef up the team.
Nigeria, under new German coach Berti Vogts, hope to increase their 6 point lead in group three as they tackle visiting Ugandan team. Lesotho, at the bottom of the table with two losses, will host Niger.
In group 4, Seychelles and Mauritius are seeking for home upsets against leaders Tunisia and Sudan respectively.
Cameroon, one of the three countries with 6 points and no defeats, welcomes Liberia in group 5. Rwanda, yet to record a point, faces an uphill task against Equatorial Guinea in an away encounter.
The surprise team of group 6, Eritrea, having beaten Kenya 2-1 in Nairobi and forced to a goalless home draw by Swaziland will play away to group leaders Angola who has 6 points. Kenya will host Swaziland.
Senegal takes on Tanzania at home in group 7 while Burkina Faso will battle to maintain their lead at home against Mozambique.
Algeria leads group 8 with 4 points and a win against visiting Cape Verde team will keep them on top no matter the outcome of Gambia's home encounter with Guinea.
Togo expects good fortune with the return of their Nigerian coach, Stephen Keshi, as they take on the visiting team from Sierra Leone. Togo's determination to climb to the top spot depends on the result of Mali's home game against Benin. Mali leads group 9 with 4 points, one ahead of Togo.
In group 10, Ethiopia pays a visit to leaders RD Congo while Libya hopes to gain 3 extra points at home against Namibia.
After a 1-0 home defeat by South Africa in day 2 matches, Zambia hope to restore their image as they visit group 11 leaders, Congo. On the other hand, South Africa is seeking for an away win against Chad to occupy the top spot.
In group 12, the second 3-team group in the qualifiers, the only match to be decided will be between visiting Moroccan team and Zimbabwe. Malawi, which is trailing Morocco, will not be in action in day 3 matches.