The Confederation of Africa Football announced the removal of the 2025 Africa Cup of Nations hosting rights from Guinea on Thursday.
CAF had announced Guinea as the hosts for the 2022 AFCON on November 30, 2018 but the football body has now withdrawn the mandate after the Executive Committee approved the decision to strip Guinea of the hosting rights.
CAF noted that Guinea would not be ready to handle hosting the tournament by the time frame slated for the tournament which is expected to fall in the summer of 2025.
The report read, “The Executive Committee was unanimous that Guinea will not be ready to host the competition.
“The Executive Committee took a unanimous decision based on the report as submitted that the tournament be withdrawn from Guinea.
“The President suggested that a delegation be sent to Guinea to inform them of the decision taken by EXCO.
“Resolution: The Executive Committee resolved to send a delegation to Guinea to inform them of CAF’s decision to withdraw the Africa Cup of Nations Guinea 2025 from Guinea,” CAF noted in a release made available to the media.
President of Nigeria Football Federation, Amaju Pinnick, had few weeks ago said that CAF was likely to strip Guinea of the hosting right of the biennial African football showpiece but CAF had then refuted report that the tournament would be taking away from Guinea.
Pinnick also revealed that Nigeria is working on a bid with Benin to host the tournament.
“We are putting a bid together for a co-hosting of the tournament with the Benin Republic,” Pinnick told the media on Tuesday.
The Minister of Sports has given his endorsement on the bidding.
“It is high time Nigeria hosted an international tournament because there are many advantages attached to hosting of such competitions.
“There are many countries bidding for the competition; we are confident of getting the nod from CAF.
“We are working with the ministry of sports to ensure that Nigeria gets the hosting right.”
Since the inception of the AFCON, Nigeria have hosted on two occasions.
The first time was in 1980 where Otta Gloria’s Green Eagles silenced Algeria 3-0 in the final played at the National Stadium Lagos with the legendary Segun Odegbami bagging a brace.
The second time was in 2000 when the country co-hosted with Ghana after Zimbabwe was displaced by CAF for non-compliance with the tournament’s specifications.
This time, the Super Eagles reached the final once more but lost 4-3 on penalties to Cameroon after the game ended 2-2 after extra time.
However, CAF has not made any official statement on any potential replacements as hosts for the continental tournament.
Should CAF approve their hosting rights, it would be the first time that Benin would be welcoming the rest of Africa.