Breakdown: All you need to know on How Afcon 2019’s new format works

The 32nd edition of the Africa Cup of Nations is slated to kick off in Egypt on 7 June.

Peoples Daily takes a look at the various countries that have qualified for the showpiece tournament and how the tournament’s new format works.

Initially, 16 teams participated in AFCON tournaments, but in 2019 a total of 24 teams are set to contest for Africa’s greatest prize.

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This is due to an extension to the number of participants by the Confederation of African Football (CAF).


  • The 24 qualified teams will be seeded into four pots based on CAF rankings and the host nation Egypt will be seeded in group A.
  • The 24 teams will be drawn into six groups of four teams.
  • The top two teams in each group, along with the best four third-placed teams will advance to the knockout phase; the round of 16.
  • In the knockout phase, extra-time and penalties will be required to decide a winner if necessary. 
  • 16 teams will contest the round of 16 and the winners will advance to the quarter-finals.
  • 8 teams will contest the quarter-finals and the winners will advance to the semi-final. 
  • 4 teams will contest the semi-finals and the winners will advance to the final on 19 July with the losers set to battle it out for third place. 

The draw will take centre stage on 12 April and the teams involved will be:  

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