• Sunday, July 14, 2024
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Why FIFA, CAF approve Morocco to host 2025 AFCON in the summer


The Confederation of African Football (CAF) and world football governing body FIFA have approved Morocco to host the 2025 Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) in the summer between July and August.

CAF and the Morocco Royal Federation of Football (FRMF) had been pushing for the North African country to stage the continental tournament during the summer due to the adverse cold weather conditions in Winter.

January and February are usually cold, the average daily temperature in Morocco is around 13-17°C. The coastal areas tend to be slightly milder, with temperatures ranging from 11-15°C.

The organisers believe that staging the AFCON in the summer when the weather conditions are relatively warmer as against the cold weather will help the players perform better.

After several conversations, FIFA and CAF finally agreed that the 2025 AFCON in Morocco should take place in the summer.

“FIFA and CAF have reached an agreement in principle for the 2025 AFCON in Morocco to take place in the summer from mid-July to mid-August,” according to a tweet by Transfer News @DeadlineDayLive.

Before now, all past AFCON editions took place during the Winter between January and February and staging the biggest football tournament at the same time when the FIFA Club World Cup was being held could pose a threat to both competitions.

The 2025 FIFA Club World Cup is also slated to take place during the summer of 2025 from June 15 to July 13

But there are also concerns about hosting the AFCON during summer due to the adverse hot weather conditions.

July and August are one of the two hottest months of the year in Morocco with average temperatures of 29°C to 36°C most days. Evenings cool a bit when the sun goes down, averaging 18°C to 22°C degrees.

During an interview on Canal + Sport Africa as reported by Morocco World News, Ahmed Yahya, the second vice-president of CAF, said hosting the AFCON during the summer will allow the availability of the players for the tournament, while also downplaying the effect of hot weather conditions.

“At the CAF level, we are aware that there is the Club World Cup in 2025, and there are negotiations between CAF and FIFA to find solutions,” Yahya stated.

“What is certain is that we are looking for the interest of the AFCON, which is to play in the summer because it is there that we have the opportunity to have free players, more than in January.”

Addressing concerns about the sweltering summer climate in Morocco, Yahya said despite the issues of the sweltering summer climate in Morocco, the Women’s African Cup of Nations was successfully held in July 2023.

“Morocco has the same temperature as Europe. We managed to play the European Cup in the summer without any problem. AFCON it’s playable in the summer.”

He advised that scheduling matches in the evening could reduce the impact of high temperatures.

Morocco was originally chosen to host the tournament in 2015 but withdrew due to concerns about the Ebola virus outbreak at the time.