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Emeka Nnaike

The 2021 Africa Cup of Nations will not be postponed amid the fallout from the coronavirus outbreak, the Confederation of African Football (CAF) has confirmed.

Football worldwide has been on hold as a result of the pandemic, which has claimed nearly 20,000 lives so far.

Recently, CAF announced the postponement of the 2020 African Nations Championship (CHAN) indefinitely, after hosts Cameroon had requested the rescheduling of the biennial tournament.

However, this is not the case for the Cup of Nations – also to take place in Cameroon – after CAF confirmed that the dates will remain unchanged unless the situation changes.

Speaking in an interview with Goal Africa, Acting general secretary of CAF Abdelmounaim Bah suggested that the qualifiers could still be completed within the remaining international windows for 2020, hence no basis for a postponement at this stage.

“For now, the Africa Cup of Nations is still scheduled for January to February 2021,” Bah said.

“The only reason we would shift AFCON would be a situation that continues into the year 2020, and if this current crisis does not allow us to play all the qualification matches.

“We still have four qualifying days to play and we can play them in two international windows.

“We have four at our disposal: June, September, October, November. At this point, anything is possible.

“If we can’t play matchdays three and four in June, we will play them otherwise in September or October and we will play match days five and six in November.”

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