November 5 – At the eleventh hour, the Confederation of African Football (CAF) has announced broadcast partners for the maiden African Women’s Champions League which kicks off on Friday with the curtain raiser between Egypt’s Wadi Degla and Mali’s As Mande.
In the build-up to the first edition of the Women’s Champions League, the continental governing body had remained very coy about broadcast partners, but with hours left to the opening match CAF said that the tournament will be broadcast by SuperSport in Sub-Saharan Africa and by BeIN Sports in the MENA region, North America and the Asia Pacific territories including Australia, New Zealand, Thailand, Indonesia, Singapore, Malaysia and Hong Kong.
The CAF website and FIFA TV will stream the matches for the rest of the world.
In a statement, CAF general secretary Veron Mosengo-Omba said: “It is important that this product we are trying to build is visible in Africa and beyond. We are delighted to see that a number of top international broadcasters will be showing matches live. This is a positive message and a motivation to the players who will be participating in the competition.”
“The advancement of women’s football in Africa is a priority for the CAF President Dr Patrice Motsepe and the CAF Executive Committee, we have to ensure that the content is readily available to the consumers and football fans. The high-quality TV product will ensure that we do not lower the standards but instead advance Africa’s cause to future sponsors who will partner with us in the future.”
CAF, however, has failed to release any details on the prize money for the competition, which will be played under the banner of the organisation’s title sponsor, French energy giant Total. In the past, CAF has been accused of neglecting the women’s game. The confederation cancelled the 2020 Women’s Africa Cup of Nations.
The Women’s Champions League must deliver more impetus to the game. At the 30 June Stadium in Cairo, Egyptian powerhouse Wadi Degla open the competition against AS Mande on Friday before Malabo Kings from Equatorial Guinea take on Hasaacas Ladies from Ghana in Group A’s doubleheader. In Group B’s opening match, Mamelodi Sundowns, the South African club owned by the family of CAF president Patrice Motsepe, will take on Kenya’s Vihiga Queens. Morocco’s ASFAR Rabat and Nigeria’s River Angels meet in the other group match.
The competition will culminate with the final on November 19.
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