Nigeria will tackle 2014 champions Libya, Rwanda and Equatorial Guinea in the group stage at the 5thAfrican Nations Championship taking place in Morocco, 13th January – 4th February 2018. The matches of Group C will be played in Tangier.
Libya shocked the African football family by winning the 2014 edition in South Africa at the expense of Ghana, despite the North African nation being embroiled in political turmoil at the time. Nigeria finished third at the same competition.
Rwanda was the last team to qualify for the finals, after edging Ethiopia 3-2 on aggregate in a play –off that was necessitated by Egypt’s decision to forfeit her slot at the championship.
Equatorial Guinea qualified for the finals following the withdrawal of Gabon, and a miffed CAF hierarchy has made it clear the Gabonese (as well as Djibouti that also withdrew after playing the first leg against Ethiopia) would not be part of the qualifying campaign for the 2020 finals.
The Draw Ceremony held at the Hotel Sofitel Rabat on Friday evening also housed hosts Morocco, Guinea, Sudan and Mauritania in Group A, in the event pitting the Atlas Lions against Mauritania in the opening match of the competition, at the Mohamed V Stadium in Casablanca on 13th January.
Hosts of the inaugural edition of the competition in 2009, Cote d’Ivoire head Group B that will be based in Marrakech, and have Zambia, Uganda and Namibia as group mates.
Group D, based in Agadir, has 2011 runners-up Angola, Cameroon, Congo and Burkina Faso.