Women's Afcon 2022: Holders Nigeria to face South Africa in repeat of 2018 final

3 weeks ago 344
Nigeria's Asisat Oshoala and South Africa's Thembi Kgatlana and Gabriela SalgadoNigeria, who have Barcelona forward Asisat Oshoala (left) among their ranks, have won the past three Women's Nations Cups while South Africa have been runners-up four times

Holders Nigeria will face a repeat of the 2018 Women's Africa Cup of Nations final in the group stages of the 2022 tournament later this year in Morocco.

First-time qualifiers Burundi and Botswana complete the line-up in Group C.

Hosts Morocco will take on debutants Burkina Faso, Senegal and Uganda in Group A, while Group B will be comprised of Cameroon, Zambia, Tunisia and Togo, the fourth team who will make their Nations Cup finals bow.

The four semi-finalists at the tournament, which will be held from 2-23 July, will automatically qualify for the 2023 Women's World Cup.

Two other sides will enter a 10-team intercontinental play-off which will decide the final three spots at the World Cup in Australia and New Zealand.

The 2020 edition of the Women's Nations Cup was cancelled because of the coronavirus pandemic. This year will be the first time the finals, which have been expanded from eight to 12 teams, will be held in North Africa.

Nigeria have won the past three Women's Nations Cups and are record nine-time champions.

Equatorial Guinea, the only other side to claim the title, were eliminated by Tunisia in the second round of qualifying.

Nchout targets maiden title with Cameroon

Ajara Nchout in action for CameroonAjara Nchout scored two goals at the 2019 Women's World Cup, where Cameroon were knocked out in the last 16

Cameroon have finished as runners-up three times - in 2004, 2014 and on home soil in 2016 - and forward Ajara Nchout says the Indomitable Lionesses squad have "big motivation" to be successful at the tournament.

"I have played two finals against Nigeria and this year we will try and do our best to win," the 29-year-old, who plays for Inter Milan, told BBC Sport Africa.

"My dream is to win the Africa Cup of Nations. It's the first time we are going to have 12 teams at the tournament and it will be more competitive.

"We want to qualify for the World Cup and represent our country and Africa. We want to make the Cameroonian people happy."

Meanwhile, the qualifying draw for the men's African Nations Championship (Chan), the finals of which will be held in Algeria next year, has been postponed.

Organisers, the Confederation of African Football (Caf), will announce a new date for the Chan draw in due course.

Women's Africa Cup of Nations 2022 group draw

Group A: Morocco, Burkina Faso, Senegal, Uganda.

Group B: Cameroon, Zambia, Tunisia, Togo.

Group C: Nigeria, South Africa, Burundi, Botswana.

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