African Qualifications

by faza657 | Posted on Wednesday, January 8th, 2014

African QualificationsAll around the African continent, hearts beat to the rhythm of football stadium songs and improvised chants by some of the most dedicated and enthusiastic fans in the world. Who doesn’t remember the infectious joy of 2010 that emanated out of South Africa?

The African qualifications for the 2014 FIFA World Cup involved 52 out of the 53 national teams affiliated to the Confederation of African Football (CAF). Each team gave their all for a slot among the five teams from the African continent that will be playing at the finals in Brazil.

The format of the qualification process for the African national teams consisted of three consecutive rounds of fiery football action that began in November 2011 and ended  in November 2013. Fans were taken on a year-long roller coaster of emotions, as week after week they followed the progress of their country’s team.

The first round involved 12 two-legged (home and away) fixtures held between 11 and 16 November 2011 for a week-long celebration of football. This round comprised the 24 lowest-ranked teams in the CAF according to FIFA world rankings and the fixtures of the competing teams were drawn during the World Cup Preliminary Draw at the Marina da Glória in Rio de Janeiro on 30 July 2011.

The 12 winners of the the first round joined the remaining 28 CAF teams in the second round of matches between football heavyweights. The teams were divided into 10 groups and the second round of matches were held between June 2012 and September 2013.

The 10 table-toppers of the second round advanced to a third and final round. This nail-biting process culminated in 5 home-and-away knockout fixtures that were held in October and November 2013. The victorious teams in this round were Ivory Coast, Nigeria, Cameroon, Ghana and Algeria. These teams proceeded directly to the 2014 FIFA World Cup finals.

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