CAF reschedules Champions League, Confederation Cup semifinals

TOPSHOT - This picture shows the trophy prior to the draw of the Confederation of African Football's (CAF) Champions league at the Ritz Carlton Hotel in Cairo on December 28, 2018. (Photo by MOHAMED EL-SHAHED / AFP) (Photo credit should read MOHAMED EL-SHAHED/AFP/Getty Images)
FILE PHOTO: The Confederation of African Football’s (CAF) Champions League trophy (Photo credit MOHAMED EL-SHAHED/AFP/Getty Images)

The dates of the semifinals of this year’s CAF Champions League and Confederation Cup were pushed forward to the second half of October, CAF announced.

The Champions League and Confederation Cup were scheduled to resume on September 22 and 25 respectively.

In a statement, CAF said that the decision had been taken following a request by the Royal Moroccan Football Federation due to constraints arising from the coronavirus pandemic.

“In light of restrictions in the Kingdom of Morocco as a result of COVID-19 pandemic leading to constraints in air travel, the remaining matches of the Total CAF Champions League and Total CAF Confederation Cup has been rescheduled following a request by the Royal Moroccan Football Federation to make way for easy travel of the participating clubs,” CAF said.

This means the first legs of the Champions League semifinal will be held on October 17 and 18 with the second legs being played six days later. The final will be held on November 6.

Moroccan clubs Raja Casablanca and Wydad Athletic will face Egyptian giants Zamalek and Al Ahly respectively.

The Confederation Cup semifinals, which will only be played over a single leg, will be held on October 19 and 20 with the final being held on October 25.

Egypt’s Pyramids F.C. will face Guinea’s AC Horoya while Moroccan clubs RS Berkane and Hassania Agadir meet each other.

CAF also made a series of announcements relating to the football calendar following the disruptions caused by the pandemic.

Meanwhile, the African Nations Championship (CHAN) which was due to be hosted by Cameroon this year will be staged early next year, CAF confirmed.

The tournament will now take place between January 16 and February 7 2021. It had been scheduled to take place in April this year but CAF announced in March that the tournament had been postponed to a later date due to the coronavirus pandemic.

CAF said that the 2022 CHAN will be hosted by Algeria in January 2023 with the specific dates of tournament to be agreed upon with the Algerian Football Federation.

The Under-17 Africa Cup of Nations due to take place in Morocco was also rescheduled to March 13-31 upon a request from Morocco’s football authorities.

It was also announced that the Women’s Africa Cup of Nations will be played in July 2022 while Senegal was named host of the Beach Soccer Africa Cup of Nations.

“The finalists will represent Africa at the FIFA Beach Soccer World Cup Russia 2021. The details of the final tournament will be communicated in due course,” CAF said regarding the Beach Soccer event.