#Algeria, #Nigeria, #Senegal, #Morocco and #Tunisia are the five teams that shall today qualify for the five spots reserved for #Africa at the forthcoming 2022 #FIFA World Cup in Qatar. This analysis is based on the results of last Friday’s results and the current form of the teams.
The Indomitable Lions of #Cameroon whose country hosted the African Nations Cup lost at home to #Algeria. The 2019 African Nations Cup Champions has qualified four times for the international soccer jamboree and playing at home after securing an away victory shall prove to be too much of a force to overcome. Cameroon has too many problems and soccer serves as an opium which tends to mask the real issues she must confront. If for nothing, Cameroon needs to stop the self-deception and delusion and international masquerading and solve its political and economic woes. It is too early for newly elected FECAFOOT boss, Samuel Eto’o to wave the magic wand he seemed to claim to have. Cameroon needs a miracle and even though “l’impossible n’est pas camerounais” an oft touted phrase about the magical prowess of Cameroon especially in politics and corruption, the gods of football have refused to be corrupted. Can the lions return to fame in Algiers today by breaking the spell at the stadium where Algeria has not lost any game for the last 18 years?
Current African champions, the Lions of Senegal lost to Egypt in Cairo and shall depend on the talismanic performance of soccer wizard Sadio Mane and the goalkeeping agility of Mendy to overcome the deficit they conceded. With a home crowd still salivating from the recent victory, this 12th player could be the difference that galvanizes the team to Qatar 2022. It is an uphill task but not impossible one for Senegal. With the Pharaohs of Egypt counting on their star Mo Salah to perform the magic and have the man mountain of a goalkeeper seal the goals, it promises to be another explosive.
The Super Eagles of Nigeria welcome the Black Stars of Ghana to Nigeria after a goalless draw last Friday in Ghana. This is a clash of the titans and while both teams have in recent outings been mere shadows of their prowess, Nigeria on paper seems the more likely to progress. The Ghanaian team lacks a certain depth and tact quite evident in their lack luster performance at the last African Nations Cup. Each soccer game is however unique. Home advantage could also be what tilts the balance to the Green Eagles. The Black Stars of Ghana can exact a revenge of the Super Eagles who in 2001 deprived them of the opportunity to qualify for the Japan/Korea World Cup. In a similar scenario, Nigeria drew with Ghana in Kumasi and in the return leg drew blood with a 3-0 victory.
The Atlas Lions of Morocco came from behind last Friday and drew 1-1 with the leopards of DRC in Kinshasa in the away game. The Leopards of Congo who are the first Sub Saharan African team to have participated at the World Cup in 1974 and have since not returned have a golden opportunity to sanitize their history. This game is an interesting game because a 0-0 tie will see the Moroccans qualify on the away goal advantage. DRC must score in order to have any chances of sailing through to Qatar 2022. They need to relive the memories of the 70s when they beat Morocco 3-0 in 1974 to qualify for their only ever world cup performance.
The Eagles of Carthage as the Tunisian soccer team is known seem to be favorites to qualify over the Eagles of Mali who lost at home during the first leg game last Friday. The Malians suffered a self-inflicted defeat with an own goal but later held their own when one of them was sent out with a red card. It is not a fait accompli and could prove to be the exception to the home advantage “rule.” It looks like the least exciting on paper but could be one for the history books. Mali is the only team on this current roster that has never qualified for the FIFA World Cup competition.