Africa returns to action this weekend as the 40 remaining nations continue on the arduous road to next year’s World Cup. Bleacher Report’s African Expert Ed Dove takes us on a tour of CAF’s weekend of qualifiers, looking at the key dynamics in the upcoming third round of matches.
The recent Cup of Nations demonstrated the quality of sides like Burkina Faso and Nigeria, as well as minnows Ethiopia and Cape Verde, while at the same time raising questions about long-standing giants South Africa, Ghana and the Ivory Coast, as well as Cameroon and Egypt, both of whom failed to qualify. With these nations be able to put recent disappointment behind them to seal progress to the world’s grandest stage?
Only receiving approximately one qualifying place for every 10 nations, compared to one in five in UEFA and one in two in CONMEBOL, competition is as fierce as ever, and a broad spectrum of sides will be battling it out to attain the ultimate prize.