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CAF postpones Africa Cup of Nations to 2022, women’s tournament cancelled

The Confederation of African Football (CAF) has postponed the 2021 Africa Cup of Nations to January 2022 due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Meanwhile, the women's version of the tournament has been cancelled.

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The men's tournament was scheduled to take place in January next year.

The African Nations Championship (Chan), which was to take place in April this year has now been rescheduled to January 2021.

Cameroon is to host both competitions.

In a news conference to announce this, CAF president, Ahmad Ahmad “Health is our number one priority. We must remain vigilant."

By this decision, the biannual tournament will now be organised in the same year as the 2022 World Cup. The last time both tournaments were held in the same year was 2010.

It was changed to odd-numbered years in 2013 to avoid clashes with the World Cup. Many said holding two major tournaments in the same year gave African national teams an extended season of competition.

Aside from the change in year, the Africa Cup of Nations, which was held in January was moved to the summer to prevent clashing with the major European league competitions.

Reacting to this, Nigeria coach Gernot Rohr told BBC said “I can understand this decision - we have more time now to prepare our young boys. It is not all bad.”

“There is a positive side in all this and we have time for some friendlies and also for the beginning of the World Cup qualifiers - normally we will begin in November with this, and I think we can follow the plan and still have time to the Afcon qualifiers starting in October, so it is a wise decision and it will be a big year in 2022,” he added.

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