the world cup

African football is on the ropes. Of the six teams in the tournament in South Africa only Ghana has managed a victory, and even that only through a penalty kick. With Cameroon out (they crashed out today against an arguably weaker Danish team) the best African team in the tournament is Cote d’Ivoire. But the elephants got dealt a bad hand and find themselves having to struggle against Portugal and Brazil if they are to advance. If I had it my way I would have a CAF inquiry at the end of this tournament to determine exactly what it is that continues to perpetuate mediocrity in African football.

The organization of the World Cup tournament by the South Africans has been superb but going by the comments on facebook, among other websites, many are hugely disappointed by the lackluster performance exhibited by the Continent’s representatives at the tournament.

cameroon to face egypt in cup final

Cameroon and Egypt will have a rematch of their group stage encounter at the final of this year’s Africa cup of nations to be played on Sunday. The indomitable lions will be looking to redeem themselves after having lost 2-4 to Egypt in the group stage earlier in the tournament. In the semi finals Cameroon beat the favorite hosts Ghana one nil while Egypt convincingly beat the Ivory Coast by four goals to one. Ghana will play the elephants from Yamoussoukro for the third and fourth place.

In related news, the Ivorian captain Drogba has requested never to be considered for the African player of the year award after CAF refused to award him the title even though he won the ballot because he did not show up.This is strange considering the fact that CAF knew that Drogba was engaged in the tournament in Ghana. It beats logic that CAF decided to hold the awards in a different country while the continent’s premier tournament was taking place in Ghana. It does not take a rocket scientist to figure out that the usual contesters for the title – the likes of Essien, Drogba, Jaidi, Eto’0 etc- would still be involved in the latter stages of the tournament because their national teams are very strong. Shame on CAF for this let down. Kanoute was not a bad choice, but to deny Drogba simply for not showing up, and knowing that he was involved in the tournament (which is organised by the same CAF) is simply silly.

the africa cup of nations, something to celebrate

The 2008 Africa Cup of Nations got off to a sizzling start with wins for all the tournament favorites that have played so far. Despite an embarrassing incident right before the Mali – Benin game, in which the floodlights went off, most of the organisation of the tournament has been done well.

Ghana deserves credit for having been able to provide stadia and other facilities necessary for the organisation of a tournament of this magnitude. The tournament also provides a brief period for the continent to forget about wars and droughts and famines and Aids and instead concentrate on the positive aspects of the continent that never make it to the front pages or headlines.

We thank the CAF and GFA for organising this wonderful tournament that gives Africans a chance to see their sons who play in Europe and elsewhere display their talents on African soil.