Magazine article New African

Mali, Here We Come. (Football: African Nations Cup Finals)

Magazine article New African

Mali, Here We Come. (Football: African Nations Cup Finals)

Article excerpt

The 23rd Nations Cup finals kick off in Mali from 19 January to 10 February. With all the stars on show, and a new trophy to fight for, this is one event you cannot miss. Even BBC-TV is broadcasting it for the first time in Britain. This preview, and the next two pages, are by Peter Law.

With a smart new trophy UP for grabs, (Cameroon retired the last one after winning it for the third time at the 2000 finals in Ghana/Nigeria), Africa's five World Cup contenders (for Japan/Korea 2002 -- Cameroon, Nigeria, South Africa, Senegal and Tunisia) are all expected to do well in Mali in a 16-strong field that includes no fewer than nine past Nations Cup winners.

For a third straight edition, the action plays out in West Africa, with hosts Mali staging the competition for the first time, at five venues -- a record of its own.

After a busy year of qualifying action across the continent, the 16 finalists are well tuned up for the challenges ahead. …

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