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CAF sets date for World Cup 2022 qualifiers draw

The FIFA World Cup draw for Africa will be held in Egypt. (PHOTO/Courtesy)

With the Africa Cup of Nations 2021 qualifying groups now known, the Confederations of African football (CAF) has shifted its attention to the next world cup.

The global football showpiece event in question is the World Cup 2022, which will be held in Qatar.

Three years to the said event, CAF, on Monday 22nd July, announced the dates for the draws of the qualifiers.

It was announced that the draws will take place at the CAF headquarters in Cairo-Egypt, on Sunday, 6th October 2019.

A previous proposal to merge the qualification rounds for the 2021 Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) with those for the World Cup 2022 was turned down after a CAF meeting on 11 June 2018. CAF reverted to the format used for the 2021 FIFA World Cup qualifiers competition.

All 54 FIFA-affiliated football associations from CAF are expected to enter qualification.

Libya was initially threatened with exclusion from the qualifiers if it failed to pay debts to their former coach Javier Clemente. However, Libya complied after FIFA gave them a new deadline. Sierra Leone also initially faced possible exclusion from the qualifiers due to the suspension of their football association. However, the suspension was lifted by the FIFA Council last month.

Qualification format:

The first round will consist of 14 home-and-away ties, featured the 28 lowest ranked teams in Africa. The draw for the first round is scheduled to take place on 27 July 2019.

The second round will see the top 26 ranked CAF teams joined by the 14 winners from the first round. These teams will be drawn into ten groups of four teams.

The third round will see the 10 group winners from the second round drawn into five home-and-away ties. The winners of each tie will advance to the 2022 FIFA World Cup in Qatar.

Having qualified for back to back AFCON for the first time in over 40 years, the Uganda Cranes will be attempting to make history and reach the World Cup for the first time in history.

In the last World cup (2018), Africa was represented by Nigeria, Egypt, Tunisia, Senegal and Morocco.

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