With less than 48 hours to the kickoff of the highly anticipated TotalEnergies African Nations Championship (CHAN) Algeria 2022, CAF in partnership with the Local Organising Committee (LOC) gave a detailed update of the tournament’s state of readiness ahead of Friday’s start.
Jointly speaking from the newly inaugurated Nelson Mandela Stadium in Algiers, CAF General Secretary, Veron Mosengo-Omba alongside the LOC Chairman, Rachidi Oukali confidently stated that all requirements of hosting a major CAF competition have been met, as Algeria prepares to welcome Africa to its shores.
The joint update by CAF and the LOC touched on various aspects of hosting an international competition such as the quality of infrastructure, transportation, stadia, accommodation, training venues and other key matters pertaining to the hosting of a CAF tournament.
“With the continued guidance of CAF, we have worked hard and well in ensuring that the tournament meets the high standards that have been set by CAF in hosting a world class competition,” said Oukali.
“We recently concluded our visit with the CAF Secretary General to all four cities and we are glad to report that he was quite impressed with the state of readiness,” insisting that it affords Algeria an opportunity to possibly host more CAF competitions in future.
In addition to the state of readiness, the LOC Chairman also heaped praise on the people of Algeria who have shown great enthusiasm in supporting the tournament.
“While all the requirements have been met, we are also proud to confirm that tickets for the opening match on Thursday have all been officially sold out, which is a clear sign that fans here at home are excited about the competition. We certainly hope that we will have equally good crowds in all the other fixtures.” he concluded.
Sharing the sentiments of the LOC Chairman, the CAF General Secretary said he was impressed over how the LOC has met and in certain areas, exceeded expectations in their preparations of hosting such a tournament.
“We have been working quite closely with the LOC and are proud to confirm that they have done amazingly well in preparing and meeting the high standards that have been set by CAF. We must also thank the governors of Algeria for their support. Everything that they had promised to CAF, has been fulfilled. They are doing a great job and must be applauded,” said Mosengo-Omba.
Asked about the importance of a unique tournament such as the CHAN, the CAF General Secretary emphasized the need for such a competition, stating that it celebrates African talent and has a role to play in the ever-growing competitiveness of African football.
The TotalEnergies CHAN is an important event for African football as it provides an opportunity for local players who play in their respective countries’ domestic leagues to showcase their skills on the international stage.
The CAF General Secretary went on further to debunk the notion of this year’s TotalEnergies CHAN edition being the last.
“We can re-assure you that this is not the last edition of CHAN. The Executive committee is meeting tomorrow, and part of the agenda has the organizing committee of CHAN mapping a way forward and the next steps in growing the competition.”
The tournament, which was first held in 2009 in Cote d’Ivoire, is held every two years and this year’s event will start from 13 January to February 3.