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19.10.2007 Football News

West Africa Dominates As Teams Wait With Baited Breath

The 16 teams that have qualified for the 2008 MTN African Nations Cup football fiesta will know which groups they will be launching their title campaign as the draw is conducted in Accra this afternnon.

Most of the football powerhouses in African football are represented and some, like Sudan and Namibia, are making a return after a long absence, but there is no doubt that West Africa which seem to be the cradle of the sport on the continent, dominate presenting as many as six teams.

But as Rosalind Amoh predicts, there will be no easy way out for all 16 contenders as they await their fate to know where they will begin their party.

Accra, Kumasi, Essipong and Tamale are the venues for the party for the Ghana 2008 MTN African Nations Cup party which kicks off on January 20.

But with the suprises that were recorded in the qualifying series as well as the general progress of the game from the various national teams, it will be a very exciting time though no team is assured an easy passage.

At the moment, the Condeferation of African Football (CAF) has not given the criteria by which the draw will be conducted but speaking to the various representatives in Accra for the draw, every team seem ready to take what they get because as they put it: “Once you qualify for the competition, you should be ready for any challenge.”

By current form and pedigree, it looks easy for the likes of Cote d'Ivoire(2006 runners-up), Cameroun, Mali, Nigeria and hosts Ghana to sail through to the next stage irrespective of the group they find themselves in, most of the teams interviewed were cautiously optimistic.

They would not say if they intend to top their group but the most important thing according to them, was to qualify from their respective groups.

But before they do that, they will first have to know which groups they will be playing in after going through a gruelling six-match qualifying series which lasted a year.