AFCON 2023 Guide

The 2023 Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) and — for sponsorship purposes, known as the TotalEnergies Africa Cup of Nations — will be the 34th edition of the biennial African association football tournament organized by the Confederation of African Football (CAF).

It will be hosted by Ivory Coast for the second time, having first hosted it in 1984.

AFCON 2023 will take place from the 13th of January to the 11th of February 2024.

In this post, FootballOrbit brings you what you need to know about the 2023 AFCON.

This edition of the tournament was supposed to be the third time that AFCON takes place in the summer (since the 2019 edition) to reduce scheduling clashes with European club teams and competitions.

But, on the 3rd of July 2022, CAF postponed it to the 13th of January till the 11th of February 2024 due to the adverse summer weather concerns in Ivory Coast — whilst retaining the name “2023 Africa Cup of Nations” for sponsorship purposes.

AFCON 2023 Host

AFCON 2023 Guide

Ivory Coast were originally awarded AFCON 2021, but it was later pushed forward to 2023 after Cameroon hosted the 2021 edition.

However, Ivory Coast later requested to CAF for AFCON to be hosted in January/February 2024 to avoid a terrible West and Central African rain season which reaches its peak around June/July.

Guinea were originally awarded AFCON 2023, but hosting duties were pushed back to 2025 after Cameroon hosted in 2021 instead of 2019.

However, Guinea could not be ready and later got stripped of AFCON 2025 hosting rights, with Morocco selected as the new hosts.

AFCON 2023 Mascot

The organizing board of the 2023 African Cup of Nations unveiled the AFCON 2023 Mascot; “Akwaba”, which means “Welcome” in Akan language.

It is an elephant, which is Ivory Coast’s animal symbol. His kit bears resemblance to Ivory Coast’s home colors.

Venues for 2023 AFCON

The tournament will be played in 6 stadiums across 5 Ivorian cities, namely: Abidjan, Bouaké, Korhogo, Yamoussoukro and San Pedro.

Teams at the 2023 AFCON

Twenty-four (24) teams qualified for the tournament. There is no debutant nation, happening for the first time since 2015.


Group A: Ivory Coast, Nigeria, Equatorial Guinea, Guinea-Bissau.

Group B: Egypt, Ghana, Cape Verde, Mozambique.

Group C: Senegal, Cameroon, Guinea, Gambia.

Group D: Algeria, Burkina Faso, Mauritania, Angola.

Group E: Tunisia, Mali, South Africa, Namibia.

Group F: Morocco, DR Congo, Zambia, Tanzania.


The top two teams for the six groups will be joined by the four best third-placed teams in the Round of 16.


In July 2016, Total secured an eight-year sponsorship package from CAF to support 10 of its principal competitions.

Subsequently, Total started with the Africa Cup of Nations that was held in Gabon in 2017 therefore renaming it to Total Africa Cup of Nations.

Defending champions

AFCON 2023 Guide

Senegal are the tournament’s current champions, having beaten Egypt on penalties in the 2021 final.

AFCON all-time records

Most successful team

Egypt is the most successful nation in the cup’s history, winning the tournament a record seven times.


AFCON 2023 Guide

Three trophies have been awarded during the tournament’s history, with Ghana, and Cameroon winning the first two versions to keep after each of them won a tournament three times.

The current trophy was first awarded in 2002. Egypt won an unprecedented three consecutive titles in 2006, 2008, and 2010.


In 2013, the tournament format was switched to being held in odd-numbered years so as not to interfere with the FIFA World Cup.

Goalscoring records

¶. The AFCON all-time highest topscorer is Samuel Eto’o of Cameroon, with 18 goals.

¶. Raafat Attia scored the first ever goal at the Africa Cup of Nations; in the first match of the inaugural tournament on 10 February 1957, he got the opening goal for Egypt against hosts Sudan in a 2-1 victory.

¶. Ad-Diba was the first ever player to score a hat-trick in an Africa Cup of Nations match; he scored four for Egypt in a 4-0 victory against Ethiopia on 16 February 1957 — the final match of the inaugural tournament.

¶. Ad-Diba was also the first ever top goalscorer for an Africa Cup of Nations tournament, scoring 5 goals for Egypt in 1957.

Oldest goalscorer

¶. Hossam Hassan was 39 years and 174 days old when he scored for Egypt against DR Congo in a 4-1 victory on 3 February 2006.

Youngest goalscorer

¶. Shiva N’Zigou was 16 years and 93 days old when he scored for Gabon against South Africa in a 1-3 defeat on 23 January 2000.

Most goals in a single match

¶. Laurent Pokou scored 5 goals for Ivory Coast in a 6-1 victory against Ethiopia in 1970.

Most goals in a single tournament

¶. Ndaye Mulamba scored 9 goals for Zaire in the 1974 tournament.

Most hat-tricks

¶. Hassan El-Shazly scored 2 tournament hat-tricks for the United Arab Republic: one in 1963 and one in 1970.

Most tournaments with a goal

¶. Kalusha Bwalya (Zambia), Samuel Eto’o (Cameroon), Asamoah Gyan and André Ayew (Ghana) each scored at least one goal in a record six different tournaments.

All-time managerial records at the AFCON

Most titles won as coach

¶. Three(3), Charles Gyamfi (as manager of Ghana in 1963, 1965 and 1982).

¶. Three(3), Hassan Shehata (as manager of Egypt in 2006, 2008 and 2010).

Most consecutive titles won as coach

¶. Three(3), Hassan Shehata (as manager of Egypt in 2006, 2008 and 2010).

Coaches who retained title

¶. Twice(2), Hassan Shehata (as manager of Egypt in 2008 and 2010).

¶. Once(1), Charles Gyamfi (as manager of Ghana in 1965).

Coaches who won titles with multiple teams

¶. France Hervé Renard (as manager of Zambia in 2012 and Ivory Coast in 2015).

Won title as both player and coach

¶. Mahmoud El-Gohary (in 1959 as a player and 1998 as a manager, both with Egypt).

¶. Stephen Keshi (in 1994 as a player and in 2013 as a manager, both with Nigeria).

Appearance in final as both player and coach

¶. Aliou Cissé (lost 2002 final as a player, lost 2019 final and won 2021 final as a manager, all with Senegal).

¶. Mahmoud El-Gohary (won 1959 final as a player and won 1998 final as a manager, both with Egypt).

¶. Stephen Keshi (lost both 1984 final and 1988 final as a player; and won 2013 final as a manager, all with Nigeria).

Most nations coached in tournament

¶. Six(6), France Claude Le Roy (managed Cameroon in 1986 and 1988, Senegal in 1990 and 1992, Ghana in 2008, DR Congo in 2006 and 2013, Congo in 2015 and Togo in 2017).

Most tournament appearances as coach

¶. Nine(9), France Claude Le Roy (as manager of Cameroon in 1986 and 1988, Senegal in 1990 and 1992, Ghana in 2008, DR Congo in 2006 and 2013, Congo in 2015 and Togo in 2017).

Teams yet to qualify for AFCON

Ten teams have never qualified for the AFCON:

¶. Central African Republic
¶. Chad
¶. Djibouti
¶. Eritrea
¶. Eswatini
¶. Lesotho
¶. São Tomé and Príncipe
¶. Seychelles
¶. Somalia
¶. South Sudan.

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