By Duncan Mlanjira
Angola 🇦🇴, Madagascar 🇲🇬, Namibia 🇳🇦, Zimbabwe 🇿🇼, South Africa 🇿🇦 and Madagascar 🇲🇬 are the teams set to represent the Confederation of Southern Africa Football Association (Cosafa) during the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations after the last rounds of qualifiers played over the weekend.
North Africa will be represented by Algeria 🇩🇿, Morocco 🇲🇦, Mauritania 🇲🇷 Tunisia 🇹🇳 and hosts Egypt 🇪🇬 while west Africa has Côte d’Ivoire 🇨🇮, Mali 🇲🇱, Cameroon 🇨🇲, Ghana 🇬🇭, Guinea Bissau 🇬🇼, Guinea 🇬🇳, Nigeria 🇳🇬 and Senegal 🇸🇳.
From East Africa they are Burundi 🇧🇮, Kenya 🇰🇪, Tanzania 🇹🇿, Burundi 🇧🇮, DR Congo 🇨🇩 and Uganda 🇺🇬.
Other Cosafa teams that have failed include Lesotho 🇱🇸, eSwatini 🇸🇿, Botswana 🇧🇼, Zambia 🇿🇲, Mozambique 🇲🇿, Seychelles 🇸🇨 and Malawi 🇲🇼.
South Africa qualified by beating Libya 🇱🇾, who had invited 9 foreign-based players for their crucial qualifier that took place at a neutral venue in the Tunisian city of Sfax on Sunday.
Meanwhile, Tanzania’s President John Joseph Pombe Magufuli gave each player a piece of land for qualifying for the Africa Cup of Nations for the first time in 39 years after beating Uganda 3-0, according to a tweet by top football African journalist, Nuhu Adams.
Adams also tweeted on Sunday ahead of the match that Tanzania’s Prime Minister, Kassim Majaliwa Kassim promised a bonus of US$5,000 for each player if they beat Uganda. Kassim had visited the national team camp ahead of their match.
According to an analysis done by www.kick442.com, 12 of the 16 nations that participated in the 2017 edition have qualified and they are defending champions Cameroon, Egypt, Guinea Bissau, Senegal, Tunisia, Algeria, Zimbabwe, DRC, Morocco, Cote d’Ivoire, Ghana, Mali and Uganda.
Nigeria, Angola, Equatorial Guinea, South Africa, Kenya, Tanzania and Benin are making their comeback. Three times winners Nigeria last participated in the tournament in 2013 and won it in South Africa.
Angola also returns for the first time since 2013 while Tanzania is coming back for the first time since 1980. Kenya also ends a 15-year absence since their last appearance in Tunisia in 2004.
South Africa and Equatorial Guinea will also be in April’s draw for the first time since Guinea 2015 while Namibia comes back 11 years after their last participation in Ghana in 2008. Benin return since Angola 2010.
Madagascar,Burundi and Mauritania will all appear in their first-ever AFCON.