Nigeria loses quest to host African Cup of Nations as Morocco and East African joint bid triumph

NIGERIA has lost the bid to host the African Cup of Nations after her joint pitch with neighbours Benin Republic to co-host the 2027 version of the tournament was rejected by the Confederation of African Football (Caf).


This year, the African Cup of Nations was due to hold in Ivory Coast but has had to be moved to 2024 due to delayed precipitated by the coronavirus pandemic. After that the biannual tournament is expected to return to its normal two-year format and today in Cairo, Caf voted on who will host the 2025 and 2027 events.


At their voting, which took place at the Cairo Marriott Hotel in Egypt, Caf's executive committee announced that Morocco won the tight to host the 2025 tournament by 22 votes, with their challengers, including Algeria, getting no vote. After the second round of voting, Caf also unveiled the joint bid by Kenya, Uganda and Tanzania as the winning the right to host the 2027 edition of the tournament.


Nigeria had high hopes of winning the rights to host the 36th edition of the championships in 2027 but the continent’s football body handed the event to the East African trio. Only on two previous occasions have Nigeria hosted the rest of Africa, in 1980 and in 2000 as co-hosts with Ghana.


Nigeria won the African Cup of Nations on home soil in 1980, beating Algeria in the final played in Lagos. However, the Super Eagles were beating finalists when Nigeria hosted the tournament 20 years later, losing out to Cameroon on penalties after playing a 2-2 draw with the Indomitable Lions.