UK viewers can tune in to British EuroSport / HD and ITV4 to follow their favourite English Premier League stars of African origins such as Chelsea’s Victor Moses and John Obi Mikel fight to carry the ultimate trophy to Nigeria.
Thanks to ESPN3 and Watch ESPN, soccer fans in the United States of America have been able to watch all matches thus far. The last two fixtures of a total of 32 AFCON 2013 battles will take place this weekend. The huge event kicked off on Saturday, January 19, 2013 with hosts South Africa drawing goalless against Cape Verde. A lot happened since that opening match.
In the knockout stages, the Bafana Bafana lost to semi-finalists Mali on penalties. Cape Verde's dream came to an abrupt end against Ghana, Nigeria stunned Ivory Coast and so did Burkina Faso against Emmanuel Adebayor's Togo.
The semi-final stage provided plenty goals and thrills as the Black Stars suffered a heart-breaking loss to the Stallions while the Super Eagles brushed Mali aside. Watch the Third-place final between Ghana and Mali live at 13:00 EST / 18:00 GMT on Saturday, February 9, 2013. Catch the big final, Nigeria vs Burkina Faso, live on Sunday, February 10 at 13:00 EST / 18:00 GMT. Which country will end up winning the precious trophy?
Bronze is not what these two contenders from Group B – especially Ghana – aimed to play for. Before traveling to Nelspruit to play Burkina Faso at the Mbombela Stadium in the semis, the high-flying Black Stars had vowed not to return to Port Elizabeth where they were based for their first four matches.
The mission was to go from Port Elizabeth, to Nelspruit and then ultimately to Johannesburg for the 2013 Africa Cup of Nations final. The reality turned out differently to what the Ghanaian team and its millions of fans wished for. Despite falling on the favoured side of appalling officiating by Tunisia referee Slim Jedidi against Burkina Faso, the Black Stars lost 3-2 on penalties to the Stallions after a 1-1 draw in 120 minutes.
Stories of unrest due to the current war in Mali have fully powered the country’s national football team to succeed in South Africa. The players, led by iconic captain Seydou Keita, carry the hopes of millions of fans back home who anxiously seek relief from their on-going sufferings marked by lack of freedom and a destroyed economic system. Clinching glory in football may not end the war but it will certainly put joy in the hearts of the people of Mali.
At the 2013 AFCON, the Malians seem to have lost the attacking instinct that saw them book a place in the tournament through a 7-1 aggregate victory over Botswana. In each of their matches, they have scored nothing more than a goal but this has proven to be enough to put them in the semi-finals. Once again, they will need to call on a high level of concentration and maintain a tight defence to avoid defeat against Nigeria.
History was made last Sunday as Mali became the first side to win a match at the 2013 Africa Cup of Nations. An 84th minute goal from national hero Seydou Keita settled things at the disappointment of Niger. What motivates the current Group B leaders is the war back home. The Malians will be confident of beating Ghana for the second time in 13 months.
The pressure on the Black Stars to deliver is intense after their opening match against Congo DR produced an unconvincing outcome. The Ghanaians squandered a 2-0 advantage as the match ended all square.
It is believed that the Ghanaian national team has suffered from clashes of egos for too long and bad results always cause divisions within the FA, the squad, the media and the fans.
This time, suspense surrounds the camp of the Black Stars ahead of the 2013 Africa Cup of Nations Cup. This is because of the composition of Kwesi Appiah’s squad. The coach made a very bold move by choosing to leave out the influential Ayew brothers – Andre and Jordan.
A quick recap of what happened in the 2012 AFCON's Last 8
The lineup for the semi-final stage at the 2012 Africa Cup of Nations is mouthwatering. Mali earned a spot in the semis after a dramatic penalty shootout saw them oust co-hosts Gabon in the quarter-finals.
Cote d’Ivoire also kicked out co-hosts Equatorial Guinea. The Elephants’ victory was straightforward, though: two powerful goals from Didier Drogba and an outrageous free-kick by Yaya Toure did the trick.
Like Cote d’Ivoire, Zambia recorded a 3-0 win in the quarter-finals. Christopher Katongo was the star man as the Chipolopolo dismantled the brave Sudanese.
Ghana joined Zambia in the semis thanks to a hard-fought triumph over Tunisia. Dede Ayew scored the winning goal in extra-time to force the Tunisians to a 2-1 defeat.
Re-live the quarter-finals matches through video highlights from our 2012 Africa Cup of Nations Fixtures and Results page.
Zambia vs Sudan, Cote d’Ivoire vs Equatorial Guinea, Gabon vs Mali and Ghana vs Tunisia complete the quarter-final phase’s fixtures list. The 2012 Africa Cup of Nations doesn’t need the weight of continental giants Nigeria, Egypt and Cameroon to be fantastic!
So-called minnows like co-hosts Equatorial Guinea have performed against the odds to give the tournament a special electrifying touch. Sudan have also provided a shock by reaching the quarter-final stage at the expense of Angola. Meanwhile, Seydou Keita’s Mali had to wait until the very last minute to know their fate.
Ghana haven’t hit top form yet and this is why curiosity comes in. How will the Black Stars fare in the knock-out stage against the struggling Tunisians? Do the Ghanaians possess enough fire in their belly to reach the final at the expectations of the public?
Followers of the competition got served with 8 great matches on Matchday 1. Equatorial Guinea opened the show in great fashion. They recorded a vital 1-0 victory against Libya thanks to a late goal from Balboa.
Zambia sealed the wonderful night with a 2-1 triumph over Senegal. The Chipolopolo will have the chance to step closer to qualification at the Estadio de Bata.
Libya vs Zambia will open Matchday 2 of the 2012 AFCON. Equatorial Guinea vs Senegal will provide thrills as the co-hosts would want to test their power against the Teranga Lions. If the Senegalese don’t improve from their poor form against the Zambians, Equatorial Guinea may clinch their second victory on the trot.
Ghana vs Botswana
With their attainments in the last few years, Ghana’s young side have proved that they are not a side to underestimate. It will be interesting to see them battling Botswana, who are just making their first appearance in the Africa Cup of Nations tournament. But that surely does not mean that they are simply minnows. An impressive qualification run that saw them top Group K is just enough to send the Black Stars a strong warning.
Ghana vs Guinea
The two countries met in the opening match of the 2008 Africa Cup of Nations, when Ghana were then hosting the tournament. A 2-1 victory for the Black Stars threw the Guineans on the back foot after Day 1, but the story is likely to be different this time around. “Revenge” is not necessarily the keyword in this game; but in any case, the National Elephants have a realistic idea of how dangerous the Ghanaians can be. Thus, we could be in for a game of strategy and techniques.
They are called the Eagles (les Aigles in French). They are led by the experience of ex-Olympic Lyonnais and Real Madrid star Mahamadou Diarra and their coach is former Toulouse, PSG and Gabon manager Alain Giresse. The Eagles are 67th in the world and 15th in Africa. What should the Malians expect of their…
They are 18th in Africa and 80th overall according to the FIFA Rankings, they are not considered as one of the continent’s main forces and they don’t even have World Cup memories to boast about. However, the National Elephants have a bigger Nations Cup history than many may recall. In this recap, we bring to mind the various highlights and lowlights of the Guinean national team—controlled by the Fédération Guinéenne de Football and currently managed by Michel Dussuyer.
Guinea’s eventful past
Let’s go way back to the year 1970. That’s when the National Elephants finally experienced African up of Nations football. Seven years before, they got disqualified from Ghana 1963 for failing to provide neutral officials in the second leg of their 3-2 aggregate tie against Nigeria in the qualifiers.
Angola and Algeria will clash at the Estadio 11 de Novembro in Luanda whereas Mali and Malawi will lock horns at the Estadio Chimandela in Cabinda.
In Group A, nothing is settled yet. Angola top the table with 4 points followed by Malawi and Algeria who both have 3 points.
Mali are the most vulnerable with a single point and a negative goal difference but they still have the mathematical chance of reaching the quarter-finals at the expense of one of Group A’s top three teams at the moment.
LiveSoccerTV.com starts by previewing Angola vs Algeria before looking ahead to the Mali vs Malawi game.
The Estadio 11 de Novembro will in Luanda will host Mali and Algeria at 16:00 GMT before welcoming Angola and Malawi at 18:30.
Mali vs Algeria – 2010 Africa Cup of Nations Match Preview
This clash will undoubtedly receive much attention due to the mental battles that will definitely be involved in the encounter.
On match-day one of the campaign, Mali unbelievably recovered from 4-0 down against the Angolans to draw level, thanks to four late goals that were scored in the last 11 minutes of the match.
The Eagles consequently earned at least a point and can now enter Thursday’s game with a boost of confidence after achieving the ‘unthinkable’ on the opening day of the 2010 Africa Cup of Nations.
Angola – time to back up and shine
Like every host nation’s dream, Angola’s wish will be to kick start the competition with three points in their bag at the end of proceedings.
However, how likely are they to defeat the Malians and therefore clinch a victory on Sunday?
Quick recent statistics and comparisons
Since coach Manuel Jose’s appointment back in May 2009, Angola have played ten matches and won only twice. The Black Antelopes’ average of goals per match doesn’t even hit one as they’ve netted only 8 times in as much as ten encounters.
Mali – The country, the football
Landlocked in the middle of other territories such as Algeria, Niger, Burkina Faso, Cote d’Ivoire, Guinea, Senegal, and Mauritinia, Mali counts as one of the largest countries on the African continent.
It is actually ranked seventh with a size of around 1,240,000 km² populated by an estimated 13,000,000 habitants.
The former French colony which gained its independence in 1959 has a motto that spreads the message of unity and team effort:
“One people, one goal, one faith” is the saying that powered the national football team to create an impact at the continental level.