Crazy AFCON decision will hit Arsenal hard (and Liverpool)

We all thought that the AFCON organisers had done the sensible thing when they moved the competition to the summer of 2019 in Egypt, but now for some crazy reason they have decided to reverse that decision now and in 2021 it is set to be held in January to Feb once again.

Of course we know it gets hot in Africa in the summer, but it’s not going to stop FIFA holding the World Cup in Qatar is it?

Can you imagine if Arsenal get themselves sorted by next season and we have Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Nicolas Pepe scoring for fun and being in a challenging position for the Top Four, and then suddenly we could lose them both for up to six weeks bang in the middle of the season. This is outrageous!

It could be even worse for Liverpool, who could lose Mohamed Salah (Egypt), Sadio Mane (Senegal) and Naby Keita (Guinea), and Klopp’s side will definitely be up at, or very near, the top of the table.

Mikel Arteta was unsurprisingly asked what he thought about the AFCON decision, and he sounded quite resigned to the fact. “Let’s see.” he said on Arsenal.com. “It’s something that we are talking with the club to figure out exactly the scenario we’re going to be looking at. It’s not only us, there are many other clubs involved but I don’t know. They never ask those questions to us so I’m assuming that we’ll have to accept whatever comes.”

This is also not a good decision for top players from Africa either because it could make them a lot less attractive to European sides and could stall their development. As Jurgen Klopp said on the BBC: “If we have to make a decision about bringing in a player, it is a massive one,”

“You know for four weeks you don’t have them. As a club you have to think about this. It doesn’t help African players.”

But the fact is that European clubs can do absolutely nothing about their top players going to AFCON, as Klopp went on to describe: “I couldn’t respect the Africa Cup of Nations more than I do because I like the competition and watched it a lot in the past. It’s a very interesting tournament.”

“But, it’s an obvious problem that you play a tournament in the middle of the season, although it makes more sense for Africa to play it in our winter when the weather is better for them – I get that.

“But we have absolutely no power – so if we did say ‘We don’t let him go’, the player is suspended.

“If a player is injured and cannot play for us we have to send him to Africa and they have a look and in one or two weeks they are back. Nowadays, it should not be like this.”

Right now, we are all moaning because we have lost Aubameyang for three weeks through suspension, but can you imagine losing him for up to 8 weeks next year, when you include the pre-tournament training and friendlies.

Okay it is not as crazy as playing the World Cup in Qatar, but AFCON will certainly affect us more as it is in the middle of the season…

34 Comments

  1. gotanidea says:

    We’d think about it IF we have Aubameyang and Pepe next season

    Let’s worry about the relegation first

    1. GB says:

      Good comment, far too early to worry about the AFCON , more important to stay in the Prem and then see if they’re still with us.

  2. Sue says:

    Sod Liverpool!!

    We may have recruited by then!

  3. Sue says:

    OT.. OMG did VAR just go against LiVAR pool?!! 😱

    1. GunnerSince2004 says:

      How the hell did the referee even allow that to play on. These EPL referees are so pro-Liverpool like the refs in La Liga are pro-Barcelona/Messi 😡

      1. Sue says:

        They are indeed and it makes me sick!

      2. Shakir says:

        I think he tried to play advantage,what kind of dumbs do we have as referees in england or arethey just biased🤔

      3. Shakir says:

        And the 1st goal should have been disallowed.Joe gomez is pulling maguire down or then again liVARpool

    2. Shakir says:

      😂first time for everything

      1. Sue says:

        I very nearly passed out, Shakir 🤣

  4. ThirdManJW says:

    Auba likely to not even be at Arsenal by then, and Pepe won’t be loss if he continues performing the way he is.

    Liverpool will be hit the hardest.

  5. Mogunna says:

    Auba is not playing for Gabon anymore, last one he was with us…Now this shows how Africa is rated at FIFA. It can’t happen with World cup nor for Euro.

    Everyone does qualifiers at same time, for euro, africa, Americas, Asia and all over. Doesn’t affect anyone and everyone fine. They will play cup in summer, but not Africans!

    That is shameful when you see the number of African or decent in modern football and how this is not at all even considered when it comes to African cup!

    We live in a world as football, whith generations in charge but completely outdated and primitive ignorant vision of Africans. This is Europe colonial countries old mentality.

    Today I see kids of every race with Salah, Auba, Mane, Mbappe, Virgil Messi, Ronaldo, they don’t look at anything else but the game as most of us. Not those monkeys screaming in stadiums for decades and nothing done! That resumes it all!

    That cup should simply played as euro, find a way to make it work, maybe less teams in both tournement, back to back, 3 weeks each, one start before Champions league final, play allowed to stay, it won’t be more than 6! Not hundreds all over Europe in middle of season!

  6. Mogunna says:

    Great topic mate! It should be a way to make it happen, less team in final phases of Euro and Cup Africa, start it May African cup as it is more players from Europe in 5 leagues. 4weeks tournement, start Euro June 5 right behind it, 4 weeks!

    They don’t have both at same time for TV rights and to fill stadiums! That would be a great option and gives a bit more rest to players!

    I’m sure many eople would have love to go to Egypt or Ghana or Marroco and elsewhere then! Then fly to France, Italy Spain or elsewhere showing up in a damn Yatch in French Rivera or Barcelona crusing from Senegal, that’s fly summer plan!

    They need to rethink that all thing, make it way more entertaining beyond football and people come like going to Ibiza. Haha!

  7. GunnerSince2004 says:

    I’ll speak as someone who’s from Africa. The problem with CAF which is the UEFA of Africa for those who dont know is that they are pro-West and North Africa (West: Nigeria, Ghana, Senegal, Mali, Guinea Bissau, Burkina Faso, Cameroon,Ivory Coast. North: Egypt, Tunisia, Algeria
    Libya, Morocco). I’m from southern Africa and I’ll tell you that the tournament rarely comes to southern and eastern African countries. My point? Most of these west African countries are near the equator so they are a bit tropical. Add to that during June/July it’s pouring with rain making it difficult to host a tournament. So CAF will basically bend over to accommodate these countries since they are the so called powerhouses of African football. Likewise with the north African countries where temperstures are cooler in Jan/Feb than it is in Jun/Jul.

  8. Tony says:

    @Mogunnna.. When you become the president of FIFA then you can assign your perspectives as however you desire and fantasize.

    1. Mogunna says:

      Tony, We talking real stuff here, no fantasy, African players and cup they p!ay for their country should be treated equally. It does affect Football itself, or this would not be a topic and concern!

      You have said nothing at all beside yapin and crying. What type comment is this?

      Oh you should be FIFA boss! Be no damn monkeys in stadium, throw bananss and kick their baboon red ass outa town!

      Football is about values, unity, peace, togetherness, fun, passion, love and equality before all!

      The greed of those in control makes football a business and don’t care for values that makes football so special.

      Klopp is not happy, Mourinho always been pissed at this Arfican treatment in harsh would sometime! we lucky Auba stopped national team or you would may have been bit more concern.

      I’m nit gonna put a Sign TONY out, but shut up unless you have something relevant to this conversation, no yappin for yappin, but devellop your thought. Equal treatment is a fantasy? Ask Klopp about it, forget Mourhino, losing it on African’s treatment!

      As I said, we lucky, Auba stopped national team, we started that African trend and Wenger of course always been pointing this unfair treatment, now more teams are concerned!

      Must be a balance between values and economy! Not all business & first!

  9. Mohsan says:

    Why can’t they have this like euro once in 4 years? Why do they insist having the tournament every year, it’s ridiculous.

    1. gizzle says:

      @moshan it is done every 2 years not every year and similar goes on in South America so stop moaning. Everyone is obliged to have a deep squad.
      @gunnerssince2004 .i assure you if south African teams put bids and make it viable economically you will host the tournament. North Africa has great crowds, West Africa lives for football, south Africa has great pitches and will definitely have a good turnout, so the question is why aren’t they putting in bids, remember when Angola hosted it was nice but the turnout was not so great.

      1. Mohsan says:

        My bad for got to add 2 years n for your information hardly any one out side Africa follows it …I would be surprised if there was even a big turnaround in Africa. The quality n standard of the cup is poor as hell, the pitches n teams are well below standard. Why not have it once in 4 years so it means something to the countries involved n spent some money on bring the standard up.

        1. Lance says:

          @Mohsan. CAF argues that AFCON is held every two years to help improve the standard of African football and to improve the facilities as many more countries have the opportunity to bid to host the tournament.

    2. GB says:

      It’s not every year, it’s every two years and I thought Aubamayang has already quit playing for Gabon?

  10. Restless says:

    YES CRAZY AFCON DECISION
    When all these international tournaments like the Club World Cup that have an impact on the AFCON how come Afcon is not consulted? The African countries are just expected to swallow the nonsense because AFCON is not important right? Now the European clubs can see that AFCON can have negative impact on the European leagues. Consulting AFCON could have avoided or mitigated these negatives but who cares about AFCON. Now let the Europeaan clubs deal with it.

  11. Desmond says:

    No politics please

  12. Desmond says:

    Admin I believe I have the right to Voice out my pain, if it takes more than ur skin to be a fan if not AFC can hold on to itself, using constructive speech (mogunna calling Africans decision primitive monkey’s kind S hard to swallow

    1. Admin Pat says:

      Mogunna was NOT talking about Africans. He was talking about banana throwing hooligans in the old days. Read it again….

  13. Desmond says:

    ADMIN COMMENT
    Stop it!

  14. Mogunna says:

    Come on now, we actually on a great forum because we are from the all world! Of course African cup should be in right period to be fare to everyone. Peace!

  15. Desmond says:

    Am pissed at the way people on this forum disdainfully talk about Africans,If you ever been to africa you will understand better, our non stop raining season and cold and dry harmattan,the heat and so many environmental factors that can spoil the tournament.you dnt expect us to disorganized our house in the name of pleasing European teams, every tribe is unique in their ways of life @Mogunna and the rest of u yabbing us Africans

  16. Glorious says:

    Well, l am not surprise that the Europeans still will not let Africans be. They colonised them and played hard ball with their independence/ freedom, even after this still want them to tailor their decisions towards favouring Europeans stand. AFCON is for development of African football, we are still under developed, and this is the reason for hosting it every 2 years, Africa would have love to have the tournament in June/July to suit European clubs but the beast of Africa is different from beast of England including other land and climes in Europe and other continent,(the weather). Africa will continue to be Africa irrespective of football decision not favorable to the European clubs. Maybe God will intervene in near future to revert our weather conditions to be like the European countries but before then, let Africa be with their decision. Hosting Afcon competition in June/July is not the best for the entire Africa at large.

  17. Ronche says:

    The decision to have AFCON in Jan/Feb was influenced by weather. West Africa has a lot of rainfall in May/June hence their decision to move the competition to Jan/Feb.. This decision is best for the quality of game play and ease of mobility for the fans. African players are some of the best we have out there so I believe the organizers also took their well being into consideration.

  18. Desmond says:

    God bless you guys,@ Glorious and Ronche,

    1. Glorious says:

      God bless you too @ Desmond

  19. Break-on-through says:

    So here was another decision that went in Liv’s favor so to try and beat AFC’s triumph. Var helps them out, fixture scheduling helps them out, referee and FA lend a hand now and then. Other teams are fighting in the face of some rulings by that list, not Liv though, no, not Klopp, not with all the northern people in positions of power towards the outcomes.

    You can’t compare the Liv feat (IF) to that of Arsenal’s. The rules, even without any bias, there’s been too many changes, it’s a totally different game today – From player protection – To more attacking tactics – To the offside rule – and ten feet rule. Half of this Liv first team would be injured right now if they were trying to match our success. Then with the AFCON players leaving. And away games would be more of a pitch battle, but today there is ref protection ..and the lesser teams open themselves up more ..they used to call that playing into Arsenal’s hands.

    1. Sue says:

      👍👍
      Hearing their fans singing “We’re gonna win the league” made me feel really queasy ☹

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