Liverpool handed Africa Cup of Nations update as CAF president sets out plans

Patrice Motsepe, CAF President, delivers his introductory speech during the draw ceremony for the 2022 African Cup of Nations (CAN) in Yaounde, Cameroon, on August 17, 2021.

The Confederation of African Football president Patrice Motsepe believes the rearranged Africa Cup of Nations will go ahead as scheduled next month in Cameroon.

There have been conflicting reports recently over whether or not the competition will go ahead as planned as the world continues to battle the coronavirus pandemic.

Africa's football showpiece, usually held every two years, was scheduled to be played last summer but was postponed because of the pandemic.

The European Club Association expressed its 'deep concerns' earlier this month about whether players would be safe at the tournament amid a rise in covid cases.

But following a meeting between Motsepe and Cameroon president Paul Biya, the Africa football chief believes the tournament will go ahead as planned.

He said: "I'm going to be here on January 7 and I'm coming to watch football. I'm coming to watch on January 9 (the opening match between) Cameroon against Burkina Faso. I'll also be around to see when the trophy is handed over."

The tournament is currently scheduled to commence on 9 January, with the final set to take place on February 6.

Naby Keita has been included in Guinea's squad for the competition, meaning Liverpool will be without his services in January as a result.

While Sadio Mane is also set to be included in Senegal’s squad, and Mohamed Salah is set to be named in Egypt's squad for the tournament.

Jurgen Klopp has previously voiced his concerns over the tournament, but says Liverpool 'will have to deal with it' in their absence.

A photo of the African Cup of Nations trophy during the draw ceremony for the 2022 African Cup of Nations (CAN) in Yaounde, Cameroon, on August 17, 2021.



He said: “The three boys helped us so much in the last few years and we knew that they were from Africa [when signing].

“They have been so important in all these situations but now they are probably not here, so that’s the situation.

"You can’t always have the perfect solution. In this case, it’s absolutely far away from being perfect without these players. But we knew it, and now we have to deal with it.”

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