Following the draw of the qualifiers of the 2017 Africa Cup of Nations, Cafonline.com sampled the views of some officials of the teams involved.
Salim Tourqui, President (Comoros Football Federation)
I am satisfied. We will be at the level and up to the task. We played with Burkina Faso last year and we drew. I don’t know much about Angola and Uganda, but I’m not worried.
Augustin Senghor, President (Senegal Football Federation)
It’s a balanced draw. The criteria are the same as in Europe to avoid big teams playing against each other. It’s a good draw compared to previous editions. For the last three previous draws, we have been in difficult groups whether for the Africa Cup of Nations or the FIFA World Cup. We will fight to qualify.
Yahya Ahmed, President (Mauritania Football Association)
It is a difficult draw but we have a lot of hope. We have been putting a team together for two years and have some experience having played in the qualifiers of the Africa Cup of Nations. To qualify we have to explore chances. Is not easy but we will put in all our efforts to obtain qualification. Currently Mauritania football is on the rise, and we will end up qualifying one day.
Pierre Alain Mounguengui, President (Gabon Football Federation)
I’m satisfied with the draw and the choice of our country as hosts by the CAF Executive Committee. It was not an easy decision. We had two other bidders, Ghana and Algeria. Ghana has a big experience not only in football but organisation of tournaments. Ghana has hosted the AFCON three times; 1978, 2000 (co-hosted with Nigeria) and 2008. Also, Algeria is great country and organized the AFCON before with huge success. To be chosen at the expense of the two countries, it’s a huge satisfaction for us.
Mbidi Frans, president of Namibia Football Association
It’s a very good draw. Anyone can beat anyone. We are going to prepare well for our opponents. The only tough nut to crack will be Senegal. The other teams we will have to battle it out and see who is best.
Jean Michel Mbono, President of Fédération Congolaise de Football
In my group, I have Kenya, Zambia and Guinea Bissau. It’s about a competition and each one has to play for their chance.