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Pharaohs get Super Eagles test in AFCON qualifying

Photo: Getty Images

Photo: Getty Images

will face an uphill battle to qualify for the Africa Cup of Nations () for the first time in four tries when it comes up against west African giants .

Today’s draw at the 37th CAF Oridinary General Assembly unveiled the 13 qualifying groups for AFCON 2017, pitting Egypt and Nigeria against Tanzania and Chad.

Only the winner of each group – along with the two best second-place finishers – will qualify for the tournament, set to take place in Gabon.

The host nation will take part in qualifying, but its Group I matches will only count as friendlies. Only that group’s best finisher outside of Gabon will qualify for the tournament along with the hosts.

52 teams were divided into four pots based on a ranking system comprising AFCON and FIFA World Cup results, with Egypt nestled in the bottom half of Pot 2.

The Pharaohs and Super Eagles have butted heads seven times at AFCON, but never in the qualifying stages.

Egypt has won the tournament a record seven times, last lifting the trophy in 2010. Nigeria won the title just two years ago, its third ever.

Qualifying for the tournament is set to begin this June and conclude in September of next year.

Clash of the Group G titans comes next year

Egypt won’t be squaring off against Nigeria, largely considered Group G favorites, until early next year with both encounters slated for March.

The Pharaohs kick their campaign off at home against Tanzania June 12-14 before traveling to Chad September 4-6.

The Super Eagles then host Egypt March 23-26 before the two rematch March 26-29 in Cairo.

Egypt finishes its campaign with a road contest against Tanzania June 3-5 of next year before hosting Chad September 2-4.

Full draw

GROUP A: Tunisia, Togo, Liberia, Djibouti
GROUP B: Congo DR, Angola, Central African Republic, Madagascar
GROUP C: Mali, Equatorial Guinea, Benin, South Sudan
GROUP D: Burkina Faso, Uganda, Botswana, Comoros
GROUP E: Zambia, Congo, Kenya, Guinea Bissau
GROUP F: Cape Verde, Morocco, Libya, Sao Tome
GROUP G: Nigeria, Egypt, Tanzania, Chad
GROUP H: Ghana, Mozambique, Rwanda, Mauritania
GROUP I: Cote d’Ivoire, Sudan, Sierra Leone, Gabon
GROUP J: Algeria, Ethiopia, Lesotho, Seychelles
GROUP K: Senegal, Niger, Namibia, Burundi
GROUP L: Guinea, Malawi, Zimbabwe, Swaziland
GROUP M: Cameroon, South Africa, Gambia, Mauritius



  1. Moe

    April 8, 2015 at 6:10 PM

    Should be relatively easy. When was the last time Nigeria beat the Pharaohs?

    • GameRef

      April 8, 2015 at 7:10 PM

      I’m not sure it would be easy.Nigeria remains a strong nation.That’s why it’s exciting.If we win the 4 matches against Tanzania and Chad and lose the two matches against Nigeria, we’re not sure to be one of the two best second place finishers.

      • Moe

        April 8, 2015 at 8:54 PM

        This is why Cuper was brought in. We will have a better coach than them and Salah is doing better than any Nigerian player right now.

        • GameRef

          April 9, 2015 at 12:07 AM

          I don’t think Salah is able to carry on his shoulders Egypt’s attacking line yet.If he wants to become that kind of player he should diversify his game.Look at Messi:he can run through a defence as he can organize attacking plays and make assists. But for now the egyptian needs players beside him who make him shine such as Gomez.

    • Sobni halalyazaky

      April 8, 2015 at 8:46 PM

      when was the last time egypt qualified in AFCON ? Eypt also has to progress a lot, continued to work head down and moving forward humbly….

  2. GameRef

    April 8, 2015 at 6:10 PM

    Exciting.Besides the match against Nigeria is well scheduled because it gives Cuper almost a year to prepare the team.It’s a good occasion to makete confidence go back if we manage to qualify with the first spot in the group.

  3. nussmasri

    April 8, 2015 at 11:19 PM

    Egypt has been getting tough draws in recent qualifications. Nigeria and egypt are historical African powers. How they end up in the same group is unbelievable. Last afcon qualifiers it was both Senegal and Tunisia. Again, African powers.

    • Hosam El-Aker

      April 9, 2015 at 9:44 PM

      It’s our own fault. We haven’t even qualified for the last three AFCONS or the last World Cup, let alone did anything at those tournaments. How then could we possibly expect to be seeded high enough to avoid the powers you mentioned?

  4. Mohamed

    April 9, 2015 at 9:03 AM

    Egypt will be top of the group!
    Win all there home games – 9 points
    Win both games away to Chad and Tanzania – 6 points
    Draw away to Nigeria! – 1 point
    Finish the group on 16 Points 🙂

  5. Ahmed , Cairo

    April 9, 2015 at 11:37 AM

    Nigeria will crush Egypt twice time, home and away… do you still remember 1:6 to neighbor country Ghana? good luck for russia 2018 🙂

  6. Nussmasri

    April 9, 2015 at 9:33 PM

    Today’s new Fifa rankings have Egypt move up from 16th to 11th in Africa. If the Afcon qualification draw happened after these new rankings, it would have put Egypt in the top seed grouping, which may have given us an easier qualification campaign. But our luck with qualification continues to be the toughest!

    • Hosam El-Aker

      April 9, 2015 at 9:45 PM

      It wouldn’t have made a difference. The pots were not determined by FIFA Rankings.

      • nussmasri

        April 9, 2015 at 11:06 PM

        How were they determined?

      • nussmasri

        April 9, 2015 at 11:25 PM

        Never mind I found the format for the seeding. I still think there are easier teams from the top pot that we could have gotten.

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