Egypt and South Africa in run off to host AFCON 2019

December 17 – Next year’s Africa Cup of Nations will take place in either Egypt or South Africa, the Confederation of African Football (CAF) has confirmed.

They were the only two countries to announce their candidature before the deadline on Friday, with the winner to be decided on Jan 9.

Cameroon had originally beaten bids from Algeria and the Ivory Coast to win the right to host the tournament but were stripped as hosts last month because of construction delays and security concerns.

South Africa has hosted the tournament twice before, in 1996, when they won, and in 2013 when they stepped in to replace Libya. They are also the only African nation to host the World Cup, in 2010. Egypt have hosted AFCON three times, notably in 1986 and, most recently, 2006, when they won the event.

Morocco, Ghana and Congo-Brazzaville had all intimated they would like to host the tournament but none submitted formal bids.

The AFCON will be held from June 15 to July 13 and is the first to be increased from 16 to 24 teams.

Still to be decided is whether, if it hosts, South Africa will automatically qualify. Egypt has already qualified but South Africa still has a final qualifier to play in March.

Another ruling to be made by CAF is whether Cameroon, as defending champion, will retain its place in the finals as the original host.

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