The draw for Africa's qualifiers for the 2026 World Cup in football, which was drawn on Thursday in Abidjan, resulted in balanced groups, and most of the balanced teams may not find much difficulty in qualifying for the World Cup.
The 54 teams that participated in the draw were divided into 9 groups, each consisting of 6 teams, with the champion of each group qualifying directly to the extended finals, which will include 48 teams instead of 32.
Morocco, who performed impressively at last year's World Cup in Qatar and reached the semi-finals, were placed in Group E, along with Zambia, Congo, Tanzania, Niger and Eritrea.
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Egypt came in Group A with Burkina Faso, Guinea-Bissau, Sierra Leone, Ethiopia and Djibouti, while Algeria fell in Group G with Guinea, Uganda, Mozambique, Botswana and Somalia.
Tunisia finished in Group H with Equatorial Guinea, Namibia, Malawi, Liberia, Sao Tome and Principe.
Here are the results of the draw for the African qualifiers for the 2026 World Cup:
- Group A: Egypt, Burkina Faso, Guinea-Bissau, Sierra Leone, Ethiopia and Djibouti.
- Group B: Senegal, Democratic Republic of Congo, Mauritania, Togo, Sudan and South Sudan.
- Group C: Nigeria, South Africa, Benin, Zimbabwe, Rwanda and Lesotho.
- Group D: Cameroon, Cape Verde, Angola, Libya, Eswatini and Mauritius.
- Group E: Morocco, Zambia, Congo, Tanzania, Niger and Eritrea.
- Group F: Ivory Coast, Gabon, Kenya, Gambia, Burundi and Seychelles.
- Group G: Algeria, Guinea, Uganda, Mozambique, Botswana and Somalia.
- Group H: Tunisia, Equatorial Guinea, Namibia, Malawi, Liberia and Sao Tome and Principe.
- Group IX: Mali, Ghana, Madagascar, Central African Republic, Comoros and Chad.
The champion of each group qualifies directly to the finals, while the top 4 second-placed teams in the nine groups play a continental play-off for a ticket to compete with 5 teams in an international play-off, to secure an additional place in the World Cup scheduled in the United States, Canada and Mexico.