Will Algeria defend their African Cup of Nations Crown?

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The 2021 African Cup of Nations tournament has, like many other major sporting events, been postponed until 2022. When it does commence, Algeria, led by team captain and Manchester City star Riyad Mahrez, will look to defend their title.

As it stands, there have not been any odds posted yet for AFCON 2021 (Now 2022), but Algeria, as reigning champions, have to be considered among the leading contenders at this point. They are a deep and talented side, as they have a roster that boasts nine players who play for clubs in the big five European leagues.

Algeria defeated Senegal in the final in 2019, as the tournament was staged in Egypt. With no odds available yet for the next tournament, you still have plenty of time to learn how to bet in Kenya before the first ball gets kicked. When it does kickoff, it’ll be the 33rd ever AFCON, and it will feature a balanced, well rounded field. It is Senegal, the runners-up last time out, who currently boast the best FIFA ranking of any AFCON side right now, checkin in at #20.

Tunisia, who finished fourth in the most recent tournament, are #27 while Nigeria, third place finishers in 2019, are ranked #31. Algeria are now down to #35 in the latest set of rankings. Morocco (#43), Ghana (#46) and Egypt (#51) have to be considered in the mix for the title as well. Also, don’t sleep on host nation Cameroon, who currently sit #53.

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In terms of individual star power for this tournament, you can look further than Liverpool’s front line. The current Premier League champs and 2019 European titleists boast Senegal’s Sadio Mane and Egypt’s Mo Salah. Edouard Mendy, goalkeeper and national teammate of Mane, plies his trade for Rennes, and he’s currently being coveted by Chelsea.

In front of him in the back line is centre back supreme Kalidou Koulibaly, who Manchester City could acquire from Napoli this summer.

That is of course, provided City pays the handsome price that the Serie A side is seeking to let Senegal’s skipper go. Since the Lionel Messi move isn’t going to happen, perhaps the Sky Blues will make their move now.

Overall, Senegal may be the deepest and most talented squad, so one might want to pick them to win it all; not Algeria.

Paul M. Banks runs The Sports Bank.net, which is partnered with News NowBanks, the author of “No, I Can’t Get You Free Tickets: Lessons Learned From a Life in the Sports Media Industry,” regularly contributes to WGN TVSports IllustratedChicago Now and SB Nation.

You can follow Banks, a former writer for Chicago Tribune.comon Twitter and his cat on Instagram.

 

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  1. ?? please Algeria didn’t beat them twice by luck. Algeria will go back to back inshallah

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