Comoros set to achieve Cup of Nations for first time and go ‘loopy’


Comoros winger Stated Bakari expects the folks of the small African island state to go “loopy” this week in the event that they attain the Cup of Nations finals for the primary time after internet hosting Togo.

“They went loopy after we beat Kenya final November so I count on extra of the identical if we create historical past,” mentioned the Netherlands-based winger.

“It’s a great feeling representing a nation understanding that everybody — younger and previous, female and male — is keen you to succeed.”

The Comoros debuted competitively in 2010 World Cup/Africa Cup of Nations qualifying and have improved constantly since struggling heavy house and away losses to Madagascar then.

Egypt and the Comoros have eight factors every with two Group G matchdays remaining between March 24 and 30, Kenya three, and Togo are out of the operating with only one.

A draw will make sure the Comorans go to the 24-nation event in Cameroon subsequent January, and even a loss wouldn’t forestall them qualifying until Kenya beat Egypt in Nairobi.

Within the unlikely occasion of Kenyan and Togolese victories, the 2 qualifiers might be determined early subsequent week when Egypt host the Comoros and Kenya play in Togo.

Bakari is assured there might be no heartbreak for Comoran supporters: “Coach Amir (Abdou) has created a mentally robust {and professional} squad. We’ll make it.”

Right here, AFP Sport highlights 5 of essentially the most interesting matchday 5 fixtures because the battle intensifies to hitch already-qualified Algeria, Mali, Senegal and Tunisia and hosts Cameroon.

Comoros v Togo

The Comoros started their qualifying marketing campaign with a shock win in Togo in October 2019 because of a aim from Faiz Selemani.

A draw with file seven-time African champions Egypt and a draw and victory over Kenya adopted, leaving them trailing Liverpool star Mohamed Salah and his Pharaohs solely on aim distinction.

Stability has been a key issue within the development of the staff from south east Africa with Marseille-born Abdou in cost since 2014.

Gambia v Angola

The Gambia is one other nation hoping to qualify for the primary time, though they can’t obtain the feat in matchday 5 with out assist from fellow Group D leaders Gabon.

If the Gambians win at house to backside aspect Angola and the Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang-led Gabonese defeat the Democratic Republic of Congo in Franceville, each international locations will safe locations in Cameroon.

But when both house staff fails to gather most factors, two-time Cup of Nations winners DR Congo will come into the reckoning.

E. Guinea v Tanzania

Equatorial Guinea have been computerized individuals on the 2012 (co-hosts) and 2015 (hosts) tournaments, however have by no means made it to the Cup of Nations by way of qualifying outcomes.

That may change this week in the event that they use house benefit to defeat Tanzania in a conflict between the second and third-place Group J groups.

The Equatoguineans are favourably positioned thanks to 2 victories over Libya with former West Ham United midfielder Pedro Obiang among the many targets.

Zambia v Algeria

Shock 2012 African champions Zambia are going through the humiliation of failing to qualify for 3 straight Cup of Nations tournaments as they put together to host in-form title-holders Algeria.

The Algerians have received 16 matches and drawn six in all competitions since shedding a 2019 Cup of Nations qualifier in Benin and trounced the Zambians 5-0 after they met 16 months in the past.

Riyad Mahrez-inspired Algeria have already certified, leaving Zimbabwe (5 factors), Botswana (4) and Zambia (three) battling for the opposite qualifying place.

Ethiopia v Madagascar

Debutants Madagascar have been the shock aspect of the 2019 Cup of Nations in Egypt, surprising three-time champions Nigeria earlier than weariness led to a quarter-finals defeat by Tunisia.

Frenchman Nicolas Dupuis coaches a staff which are properly positioned for a second successive look as they path Group Okay leaders the Ivory Coast solely on aim distinction.

However Ethiopia, one level behind the pacesetters, are formidable at house, surprising the Ivorians with Shimelis Bekele the match-winner and firing three unanswered targets previous Niger.




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