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The craze of the Africa Cup of Nations

There are many different opinions that lead to disputes amongst many different people. However, there is always something that manages to pull an entire nation together. In the case of Nigeria, it is the support the country shows to its football team. Currently, the country is in its final preparation to show its support to the Nigerian Football team in the Africa Cup of Nations. Football has always been something that has got the Nigerians together, and with the cup taking place after 23 years as it was moved up to 2022 due to a delay in its original dates. All of that was in the past, and the teams have already reached Cameroon. This year the teams will be competing to take the title from Algeria while Algeria is set in its tracks to defend its claim as champions. 

Why is the Africa cup of nations treated differently? 

There have been many mixed opinions on the exact importance of the Africa cup of nations. Due to which many former players such as Ian Wright have spoken out. The European Championships are the ones that people wait for throughout the year. And the players have no restrictions while representing their respective nations on the international platform. But the same cannot be said for African players that have the opportunity to take part in AFCON. 

Ian Wright believes that it is due to the role that media plays in the portrayal of AFCON that both people and the fans do not wait for its arrival. Rather there are questions whether the AFCON should take place and whether there could be possibilities of AFCON being postponed. The ex-player also highlighted that how is that people do not question the European championships taking place in 11 different cities, but the media is concerned about players when they are eager to play in AFCON.  

The player ultimately highlighted that the coverage of the tournament is ‘TINGED WITH RACISM.’ There was also a lot of speculation of whether players would show up for their nations in the international fixtures as the tournament is on the same dates as the premier league. To which the boss of Palace clearly mentioned in an interview that he would never stop a player that wished to compete in the tournament. While at the same he also made the comment that AFCON is as important as European Championships. 

Nigerian fixtures

As for Nigeria, they have a few tough fixtures to get across if they want to keep their hopes alive of winning this year’s tournaments. The first match that Nigeria will play is against Egypt, which will be played on the 11th January 2022. After which, the team will have a 4 days’ rest before playing Sudan on the 15th January 2022. 

The fans are sure hoping that their hero Kelechi Iheanacho is able to score some goals for them just like he has done for Leicester City. At the same time, there is also Chukwueze that has what it takes to snatch the spotlight. Only time will tell how well the Nigerians will perform for the Super Eagles at the AFCON 2022.

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