April 17, 2024 12:10 pm
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Nigeria Gears Up to Lock Horns with South Africa and Other Contenders for the Coveted 2026 World Cup Ticket

The Super Eagles of Nigeria are set to take on South Africa once again, this time for a spot in the 2026 FIFA World Cup. This comes after the official draw for the qualifying rounds, which took place just hours after the 45th CAF General Assembly in Abidjan. The prestigious tournament will be jointly hosted by the United States of America, Canada, and Mexico.

The draw put Nigeria in Group C alongside South Africa, Benin Republic, Rwanda, and Lesotho. What makes this group particularly interesting is that Benin Republic is now being coached by former Eagles coach, Gernot Rohr. This adds an extra layer of anticipation and excitement to the matches between the neighboring countries.

In total, 54 African nations will compete for the available 9.5 allocated spots for Africa in the World Cup. The qualifiers are set to officially start in November. As in previous qualifiers, the winners of each group will automatically qualify for the 2026 FIFA World Cup. The four best runners-up from the groups will compete in a CAF Play-Off tournament. The winner of this tournament will then move on to the FIFA Play-Off tournament, potentially becoming the 10th African nation in the World Cup.

The draw itself was attended by prominent figures such as CAF President Dr. Patrice Motsepe, FIFA President Gianni Infantino, and several African football legends including Emmanuel Eboue, Asamoah Gyan, Austin ‘Jay Jay’ Okocha, Emmanuel Adebayor, Wael Gomaa, and Alexandre Song. Together, they added an extra element of excitement to the event.

Below is the full list of the draw:

  1. Group A: Egypt, Burkina Faso, Guinea Bissau, Sierra Leone, Ethiopia, Djibouti
  2. Group B: Senegal, Congo DR, Mauritania, Togo, Sudan, South Sudan
  3. Group C: Nigeria, South Africa, Benin, Zimbabwe, Rwanda, Lesotho
  4. Group D: Cameroon, Cabo Verde, Angola, Libya, Eswatini, Mauritius
  5. Group E: Morocco, Zambia, Congo, Tanzania, Niger, Eritrea
  6. Group F: Cote d’Ivoire, Gabon, Kenya, Gambia, Burundi, Seychelles
  7. Group G: Algeria, Guinea, Uganda, Mozambique, Botswana, Somalia
  8. Group H: Tunisia, Equatorial Guinea, Namibia, Malawi, Liberia, Sao Tome
  9. Group I: Mali, Ghana, Madagascar, Central African Republic, Comoros, Chad

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