The Confederation of African Football (CAF) will on Wednesday pick between Egypt and South Africa as host of the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations.
Original host, Cameroon, was in November stripped of the right as a result of delays in construction and security threats, with CAF promising to announce a befitting replacement.
South Africa and Egypt were shortlisted among other countries that showed interest, and President of the AFCON Organizing Committee, Amaju Pinnick, has now hinted on what to expect on Wednesday.
“The AFCON committee of which I am the chairman has done a SWOT (Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats) on both bidding countries and we will meet on the sideline of the CAF Football Awards to finally decide on the best option and present same to CAF before Wednesday’s meeting.
“The interest of African football is paramount in this. It is important that we get this right so that the selected country can quickly put structures in place for the championship which is only about five months away.”
Egypt and South Africa have differing strengths with regards to their individual bids to host the 32nd Africa Cup of Nations finals holding this summer. This year’s edition will be the first to entertain 24 teams.
South Africa hosted and won the 1996 finals that was taken away from Kenya for ill –preparedness, and then also hosted the 2013 finals (that Nigeria won) after civil strife broke out in designated host nation, Libya, in 2011.
In 2010, South Africa became the first African nation to host the FIFA World Cup – a 30 –day, 32 –nation extravaganza that was widely seen as a magnificent success. A year earlier, the nation also hosted the FIFA Confederations Cup.
Egypt has hosted the continent’s top football houseparty three times previously, including hosting and winning the 1986 and 2006 finals. The country also hosted the FIFA U17 World Cup finals in 1997 and the FIFA U20 World Cup finals in 2009.