Morocco will host the 2025 Africa Cup of Nations whilst Kenya will co-host the 2027 edition with Tanzania and Uganda, according to the Arab Weekly and agencies, September 27.
The North African country won by default as candidacies from Algeria (a serious Moroccan rival in the bidding), Zambia, and a joint bid from Nigeria and Benin were withdrawn before the vote.
The Confederation of African Football (CAF) were given a deadline (September 27) to elect a host nation for the 2025 finals.
Morocco was a clear favourite in the race to host the 2025 competition and they will see it as a boost for their hopes of hosting the 2030 World Cup. The country is bidding to co-host the global tournament alongside Spain and Portugal.
It will only be the second time that Morocco will host the Africa Cup of Nations. The continental tournament last took place in the country in 1988.
For the 2025 competition, the country has proposed six different host cities, the capital, Rabat, Agadir, Fes, Casablanca, Tanger and Marrakech, close to the epicentre of the deadly earthquake that took place this month, killing approximately 2,900 Moroccans in what was the deadliest natural disaster in the country for over a decade.
Morocco will be strong favourites in the postponed 2024 tournament as well as the 2025 edition. Currently ranked 13th in the global rankings, the Atlas Lions are the number 1 side in Africa.
Their tails will also be up due to their strong performance at the 2022 World Cup in Qatar, shocking Portugal and Spain to set up a final four tie with France. Their incredible World Cup journey came to an end as the French proved too strong for the spirited Atlas Lions outfit, winning 2-0.
The continental competition, won by Senegal in 2022, was set to take place in Ivory Coast in June 2023 however was postponed to early 2024 due to concerns over the rainy season in the West African region as a whole.
The 2024 edition in Ivory Coast will take place from January 13 to February 11.
The Arab Weekly/Reuters