Where is the Afcon fever?

11 January 2017 | Opinion

The biggest continental football showpiece will officially kick-off this weekend in Gabon.

The Total Africa Cup of Nations is indeed upon us and this time around there is general consensus that the tournament has no clear favourites as all teams are capable of doing well.

Reigning champions Ivory Coast, who won the title in Equatorial Guinea in 2015, are still regarded as strong contenders even though they will be without their inspirational skipper Yaya Toure, who has quit international football to concentrate on his Manchester City career.

Countries like Ghana, Algeria, Egypt, Mali, Senegal and Cameroon also have an outside chance of winning this year's tournament.

Our only SADC representatives Zimbabwe surprised all and sundry with their magical form during the qualification stage, but are drawn into a tough group along with Algeria, Tunisia and Senegal.

But in football it is current form that matters and the Zimbabwean Warriors will likely fancy their chances and emulate Zambia who in 2012 won their first Africa Cup of Nations title by beating tournament favourites Ivory Coast in a dramatic penalty shoot-out.

Although the Africa Cup of Nations is just a mere three days away it is safe to say that Namibian football lovers in general are yet to be caught by this year's Afcon fever. Surely local sport lovers are disappointed by the status of football in the country, particularly the fact that the Namibia Premier League is yet to start due to a funding crisis.

In the absence of a local football league, many soccer enthusiasts have found consolation with European leagues like the English Premier League and La Liga which they follow religiously.

The fact that Namibia has not qualified has also dampened spirits as there has been no keen interest leading up to the Afcon finals.

However this should not deter us from spreading the fever and telling the world that we too are a football-crazy continent.

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