Africa Cup of Nations is one of the most popular football competitions globally, and for sure the one whose popularity is the fastest rising. BetXchange will make a quick preview of the entire competition and mention a few top favorites for winning the title.
The Lions of Teranga are coming to Cameroon as top favorites. However, the difference between them and the rest of the contenders is not big at all. Mane and his crew had a solid draw for the group stage and won’t have difficulty reaching the knockout stage.
Besides Liverpool’s star, the Senegalese team also includes Chelsea’s goalkeeper Edouard Mendy, PSG’s Idrissa Gueye, and Napoli’s Kalidou Koulibaly. All in all, they are a very balanced team in all the lines and physically strong.
The reigning champions are the next favorites on the list. Even though they don’t create much hype as some of the other teams in this competition, Algeria is by far tactically the most endowed crew at ACN. Riyad Mahrez, Said Benrahma, Islam Slimani are leading the attack, Sifiane Feghouli and Ismael Bennacer are running things in the midfield, and plenty of other younger players have their role as well.
Mo Salah, arguably the best player on the globe, leads the Pharaones on their quest to regain the crown. There aren’t too many players who are playing abroad in this unit. Apart from Salah, Elneny, Trezeguet, Mohamed, and Marmoush, which is the biggest strength of this team, as most of the remaining players know one another very well, and have strong chemistry on the field.
Of course, Mo Salah will make a difference up front, as he is truly one of the best players in the world over the last five years.
Is in a group with Algeria, and we are about to see one very interesting matchup early on. This is an experienced unit, one of the oldest in the tournament, with the majority of players already turning 30 years. The biggest stars are coming from the English Premier League, Bailly, Pepe, Zaha, Seri, Cornet, etc. Ajax’s Sebastian Haller will lead the attack, and overall, this part of the team and the midfield are far better than the defense.
This team plays hard football, with lots of running and physical duels in the midfield, and once Ivory Coast is on the pitch, we don’t expect to see too many goals.
The hosts of the competition had a very favorable draw, and they shouldn’t lose too much energy during the group stage. They have a fairly young lineup, with numerous players between the age of 22 and 26, with the biggest stars being Bayern Munich’s Choupo-Moting and Ajax’s goalkeeper Andre Onana.
Cameroon has a very talented squad, and their approach is very fluid. The Indomitable Lions still haven’t matured in certain areas, but they adjust to the rival’s style of play very well and manage to find the response all the time.
Things couldn’t get any worse for the Super Eagles, who changed their head coach recently, then lost Victor Osimhen and eventually Emmanuel Dennis just a few days before the start of the tournament.
The atmosphere isn’t great at all, especially because of the most recent things with Dennis. There is a major disbalance between the offensive line and all the other areas of the team, and the Super Eagles have numerous attackers, but on the other side, very few defenders with high quality.
This team might be a dark horse, because they have enough experience and one very solid coach, Vahid Halihodzic. Amrabat, Haddadi, Saiss, and a bunch of other young players look pretty solid and can defeat any opponent in the tournament.
Morocco always had several playmakers with fine technique, which is the case now.
This team is a mix of experience and youth, with the older players in attack, Khazri, Msakni, and Sliti, and the youngsters in defense and especially the midfield. That might be a huge plus for Tunisia, with all the young guys binging in new energy, but on the other side, a minus, because of inexperience.
Our pick in this championship is Algeria, as reigning champions have the entire package. We’ve often seen Senegal failing to show up when being the favorite, while Egypt looks as if it depends upon Salah way too much. Meanwhile, Algeria looks very tough, and acts as a unit, a true team, with several players leading the way.
Pick: Algeria 5.4 at BetXchange