Quote of the week

“To be a great champion you must believe you are the best. If you're not, pretend you are.” – Muhammad Ali

Thursday, January 17, 2013

Afcon 2013: Rules and Regulations

Know your rules Bafana...
The 29th Africa Cup of Nations (Afcon), hosted by South Africa, kicks off in Johannesburg, Soccer City, on January 19, 2013 and runs until February 10, 2013.

Duration
Afcon 2013 will be held over a 22-day period from the opening match to the final at Soccer City. There will be six match-free (rest) days in between, meaning there will be 16 match-days in total. For the most part, there will be two matches daily on those days.

Teams and Groups
Sixteen countries will be taking part in the tournament, with South Africa qualified as hosts. Bafana are joined by 15 countries from the qualifying rounds that have produced casualties in a proportion never seen in the history of the tournament.

Missing in Action
The traditional powerhouses of the tournament will be missing, including Egypt who have won three of the last four tournaments and seven in total (1957, 1959, 1986, 1998, 2006, 2008, 2010) and Cameroon (winners in 1984, 1988, 2000 and 2002).

Sweet Sixteen
The 16 teams have been divided into four groups and will play in five host cities – Johannesburg, Rustenburg, Durban, Nelspruit and Port Elizabeth.

Group A: South AfricaAngolaCape VerdeMorocco
Group B: Ghana, DR Congo, MaliNiger
Group C: ZambiaBurkina FasoNigeriaEthiopia
Group D: Ivory CoastAlgeriaTogoTunisia

Format and Regulations
The 16 teams have been drawn into four mini-league groups of four teams each. The top two teams from each group will progress to the quarterfinals. There will be six matches in each group and 24 in total during the group stage.
Missing in Action
Seven-time African champions Egypt
Article 72 of Caf’s Africa Cup of Nations regulations clarifies the parameters that will determine who progresses from the group in the event of a tie. In the event of two or more teams being equal on points at the conclusion of the group stage, the following criteria shall be used to establish the ranking of the teams:

72.1. Greater number of points obtained in the matches between the teams in question (head-to-head)
72.2. The best goal difference in the matches between the teams in question
72.3. Greater number of goals scored in the group matches between the teams concerned
72.4. Goal difference in all group matches
72.5. Greatest number of goals scored in all the group matches
72.6. Fair Play points system taking into account the number of yellow and red cards
72.7. Drawing of lots by Caf Organising Committee

Knockout Stage
The quarterfinals to the final will be a straight elimination series with games played for 90 minutes followed by 30 minutes of extra time and, ultimately, if there’s still no winner a penalty shoot-out.

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