2013 Africa Cup of Nations: 1st Round Qualification

Whilst in Poland and Ukraine Euro 2012 was taking place, the second leg of the 1st Round of qualification for the 2013 Orange African Cup of Nations (ACN) Finals was completed. In ranking terms, the biggest upset saw Egypt (Confederation of African Football [CAF] Ranking 8) beaten by the Central African Republic (22). Given the current political situation and the shadow of the Port Said Stadium disaster earlier this year, perhaps it is no surprise that the Egyptians were knocked out. In the first leg at the Borg El Arab Stadium in Alexandria, Egypt were twice ahead, but lost the game 3-2. In the return game the game ended level at 1-1 and the seven times ACN winners, Egypt were out 4-3 on aggregate.

There were high scoring aggregate wins for Cape Verde (18) over Madagascar (43) 7-1, Congo DR (38) against the Seychelles (48) 7-0 and Algeria’s (3) 6-2 victory over Gambia (28).

São Tomé and Príncipe (34) went into the second-leg game against Sierra Leone (10) with a 2-1 lead and must have fancied an up set was on the cards when they took the lead at the National Stadium in Freetown after just two minutes to have a 3-1 aggregate advantage. However, Sierra Leone scored four goals in the opening half to open up a 5-3 cushion. São Tomé and Príncipe responded early in the second-half to cut the aggregate deficit to 5-4, but they couldn’t find another goal, which would have taken them through on away-goals.

Lowly ranked Guinea-Bissau (44) made four time ACN winners, Cameroon (13) work very hard over both legs, with Cameroon only winning each leg 1-0 for a 2-0 aggregate win. Another ‘big-name’ Nigeria (11) made heavy weather of progressing against lower ranked opposition after a 2-0 second-leg win over Rwanda (35).

Three games were decided on away goals with Ethiopia (39) causing a bit of a shock over Benin (17), Zimbabwe (26) overcoming Burundi (40) and Togo (24) seeing-off Kenya (29). Away goals couldn’t separate Tanzania (42) and Mozambique (33) and the tie went to penalties. Mozambique missed their first two spot-kicks but eventually emerged 7-6 on penalties.

In the remaining games, Uganda (23) overturned a 3-1 first-leg deficit, with a 4-0 victory over Congo (19), Malawi (27) beat Chad (30) 4-3 on aggregate and Liberia (37) held onto their 1-0 first-leg lead over Namibia (41) after drawing the second-leg 0-0.

The fourteen winners of these 1st Round games are now joined by the sixteen teams that took part in the 2012 African Cup of Nations and will play over two-legs in September and October 2012, with the winners gaining a place at the 2013 Finals in South Africa. The teams are to be place in two pots, with a team from each pot drawn against each other. The method by which the pots are decided can be found at the following link.

The draw is as follows:

 Mali v Botswana

Zimbabwe v Angola

Ghana v Malawi

Liberia v Nigeria

Zambia v Uganda

Cape Verde v Cameroon

Mozambique v Morocco

Sierra Leone v Tunisia

Guinea v Niger

Sudan v Ethiopia

Libya v Algeria

Ivory Coast v Senegal

Congo DR v Equatorial Guinea

Gabon v Togo

Burkina Faso v Central African Republic

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Posted July 7, 2012 by Editor in category "2013 Africa Cup of Nations

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