2024 Manitoba African Cup of Nations kicks off

Sixteen teams compete for the ultimate trophy and enviable positions

The annual Manitoba African Cup of Nations has been ushered into play as 16 teams play for accolades and bragging rights.

Players and technical members are expected to perform their respective duties in the competition which takes place at the Ralph Cantafio Soccer Complex in Winnipeg.

In the maiden edition, six years ago, four teams featured to demonstrate their playing and technical prowess. The four teams included Ghana, Senegal, Eritrea and the Democratic Republic of the Congo.

Some of the competing teams for this year’s edition include Canada, Ghana, Nigeria, Cameroon, Somalia, Kenya, Rwanda and Uganda. The remaining teams involved consist of the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Senegal, Egypt, Eritrea, Tanzania, South Sudan, Ivory Coast and Morocco.

Canadian African Cup of Nations president Gode Katembo explains the motive behind the tournament.

“The tournament is about bringing communities together, creating that safe space for where youth, but also athletes can have a plat- form where they can showcase what they’re capable of doing,” he said, as reported by CBC News.

“Africa is a big community, it’s a big continent, but if there’s one language that we all can understand it is the language of soccer,” he added.

In some opening games, Ghana defeated Tanzania 2–1 to make a statement of intent for the competition. Ghana took the early lead and later doubled it, but Tanzania managed to place a ball into Ghana’s net, through a sumptuous volley as the goalkeeper was caught ball watching before the close of the game.

Nigeria went all out to delight their fans and spectators by walloping Cameroon in a seven goal thriller, emerging the high scoring team in the opening day.

Ivory Coast announced their presence following a 4–1 win over Kenya.

Uganda and Rwanda were involved in a five goal game, ending 3–2 against the latter.

Egypt recorded a clean sheet over Eritrea after scoring two unanswered goals.

Canada and Senegal split honours 1–1.

Congo and South Sudan both had a 2–1 win over Somalia and Morocco, respectively.

The competition began in June and will continue into August.