Congo-Brazzaville has denied claims that it is keen to replace Cameroon as the host for the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) despite the an official from the Confederation of African Football (CAF) saying the country had submitted a bid.
Having stripped Cameroon of the rights to host the continental competition, CAF announced it was taking bids from interested countries as a replacement. The body’s vice president Omari Constant announced last week that Congo was one of the countries that were keen on hosting the tournament.
Congo’s Sports Minister Hugues Ngouélondélé distanced his country from the claims, saying that his country was not in a position to organize the tournament.
“We are six months away from organising the African Cup of Nations and it will not be possible for us to organise it with honor and dignity,” Ngouélondélé told Radio France International.
“It is rather the opposite, Congo-Brazzaville will not be candidates. It will not be possible.
“Maybe one day we will be candidates. But for the moment it is not on the agenda of our government. Maybe the idea has circulated, but in the face of reality is that we cannot organise a big event like this.
“We do not have the structures for the moment. We have other priorities than to organise the AFCON tournament at the moment.”
Morocco and South Africa are seen as the favourites to host the tournament, as both have ready infrastructure to organize a competition of such magnitude.
CAF promised to announce a new host before the end of the year.