CAN Morocco 2025 qualifiers: Reactions from the teams involved. Badou Zaki’s opinion


The draw for the CAF Africa Cup of Nations qualifiers took place last Thursday. Also, several players in the beautiful game offered their first reactions to the microphone.

Emerse Fae, coach of Ivory Coast

I am happy because we are going to play against Zambia, a team we know very well. In our last qualifying campaign, we lost 3-0 against them. We know what mistakes we must not repeat against them, to beat them. I am also happy because I did not want to have countries geographically far from Ivory Coast. That said, in Africa, there are no more small teams. All the selections will want to challenge us because we are the reigning champions.

Amir Abdou, Mauritania coach

A rather complicated draw. Egypt will be the big contender for qualification. They have a track record that speaks for themselves, seven times African champion, that’s not nothing. We find Cape Verde who eliminated us during the last CAN. This team is made up of many quality players. We have Botswana, they are having a good qualifying campaign for the World Cup. We have a fairly tough group. It’s up to us to believe in this qualification. We will do everything possible to go for our fourth participation in the CAN.

Kevin Nicaise, Chad coach

First of all, it will be the reigning African champion against the last team in the FIFA rankings to qualify. These will certainly be great matches and we will vigorously defend our colours. Apart from that, the group remains relatively open and we will approach these qualifications with humility and ambition.

Badou Zaki, Niger Coach

We are in an affordable group. We have every chance of qualifying. For me, Ghana is a football country with a selection with great professionals. But it is not the team of 5 or 6 years ago. Even at home, they can lose. Angola showed a good face during the last CAN and beautiful football, modern, fast football. It is a selection that has shaken up the big teams in Côte d’Ivoire. I know Sudan very well. They are first in their qualifying group for the World Cup. They will be dangerous, but we know our strengths and we know that we can go far.

Leslie Notši, Lesotho coach

The draw is very interesting because when you have the host country in your group, it means that they automatically qualify for the tournament and you have to work extra hard to get the last qualifying place which will be contested by the other three teams in the group. We will work very hard to be competitive and try as much as possible to take maximum points in the matches against the countries that are with us in our group.

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