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Extended international holiday for Super Eagles and Peseiro as Afcon qualifiers are postponed



The possibility of Nigeria’s Super Eagles playing at home again this year has been dimmed as the match day 3 and 4 of the Africa Cup of Nations qualifying series meant to hold in September have been moved to next year march.

It means an extended holiday for the Super Eagles and the new coach, Jose Peseiro.

According to information gathered from AFP, CAF postponed the matches on account of the earlier shifting of the dates of the final competition from June July next year to January/February in 2024.

It is also to allow the five African teams to the Qatar 2022 World Cup the opportunity to concentrate on the global tournament.

In the original schedule, four match days were to have been concluded last month, but for the threat of pulling out issued by Tunisia which felt the tightly crammed fixtures would affect their team’s preparations for the World Cup.

“The postponement of the Cup of Nations offered an opportunity to reschedule the remaining qualifying matches,” a document addressed to the members of the executive committee of the CAF, which has been seen by AFP, outlined.


“It also makes it possible to open the dates in September to international friendly matches for preparation for the World Cup.”

Senegal, who won the 2022 Cup of Nations in February, Cameroon, Ghana, Morocco and Tunisia have qualified for the World Cup to be staged in Qatar from 21 November to 18 December.

The third and fourth rounds of qualifying for the 2024 Cup of Nations will take place in March 2023, match days five and six will be held in June with the sixth day set for September.

Kunle Solaja is the author of landmark books on sports and journalism as well as being a multiple award-winning journalist and editor of long standing. He is easily Nigeria’s foremost soccer diarist and Africa's most capped FIFA World Cup journalist, having attended all FIFA World Cup finals from Italia ’90 to Qatar 2022. He was honoured at the Qatar 2022 World Cup by FIFA and AIPS.

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