- Ghana rekindle rivalry with Uruguay, with memories of South Africa 2010
- No African team has ever gone past the quarter finals
- Senegal will be the first African country in action, playing against the Netherlands
The African quintet heading to the 2022 World Cup in Qatar have been handed tough draws after the ceremony was conducted in Doha on Friday night.
African champions Senegal seem to have the most comfortable group of the five African teams in Qatar, but still face a tough challenge to make it into the round of 16.
The Lions of Teranga are drawn in Group A and will face off with Ecuador, Netherlands and host nation Qatar. They will play their opening match against Netherlands on the first day of competition.
Under Aliou Cisse who is leading the team to it’s third appearance at the World Cup and second consecutive. They will have memories of their maiden appearance in 2002 when what was considered a golden generation then reached the quarter finals, losing out to Turkey on the golden goal rule.
Spearheaded by Liverpool forward Sadio Mane who scored the penalty that saw them qualify, Senegal will fancy their chances of progressing further than the group stage.
Rigobert Song has played at the World Cup as a player, and will be returning this time as a coach having guided Cameroon to victory over Egypt in the play-off of the CAF qualification to progress to Qatar.
The Indomitable Lions have been drawn in Group G and face tough opponents in Brazil, Serbia and Switzerland.
Song has vivid memories of facing Cameroon. In his first ever World Cup, at the tender age of 17, the tough tackling defender faced the Seleção, picking up a red card as the African giants lost 3-0 in the group phase.
Cameroon also faced Brazil at the 2014 World Cup, losing 4-0.
Switzerland and Serbia will also be tough opponents for Cameroon, but with a youthful and hungry squad, they can be the surprise package.
The Black Stars who beat Nigeria on the away goal rule to qualify have perhaps one of the most interesting groups. They have been drawn in Group H which includes Portugal, Korea Republic, and most interestingly, Uruguay.
Ghana and Uruguay have an interesting history from the 2010 World Cup quarter finals. Luis Suarez handled a goal bound shot in the dying minutes in what would have been a winning goal for the Ghanaians, taking them to the semi-finals for the first time in history.
Suarez was consequently red carded, Ghana awarded a penalty which Asamoah Gyan missed, something that he is constantly reminded of even today. Uruguay went on to win the game on penalties.
Ghana, have a bone to pick with the South Americans in this group. Suarez will surely be part of the squad, basing on his current form with Atletico Madrid.
They also face a tough Portugal side led by Cristiano Ronaldo who will most likely be playing his final World Cup while the Korea squad is headlined by Tottenham’s Son Heung Min.
North African side Morocco who thrashed DR Congo 5-2 on aggregate to sail to their sixth World Cup are drawn in Pool F that has Belgium, Canada and Croatia.
Belgium were the best ranked country in the world until the last ranking lost which saw Brazil get back to the top and they finished third at the 2018 World Cup in Russia. They will most likely be the toughest opponent in this group.
Morocco can fancy their chances against Canada who return to the World Cup for the first time since 1986 as well as Croatia, losing finalists from the Russia tournament in 2018.
The Carthage Eagles have also landed a tough pool as they will face defending champions France, Denmark and the winner from the InterContinental Play off winner between Peru, Australia and the United Arab Emirates in Group D.
The Tunisians are playing in their sixth World Cup and qualified after edging out Mali 1-0 on aggregate in the CAF play-off.
Qatar 2022 groups in full
Group A: Qatar, Ecuador, Netherlands, Senegal
Group B: England, Iran, USA, Scotland/Wales/Ukraine
Group C: Argentina, Saudi Arabia, Mexico, Poland
Group D: France, UAE/Australia/Peru, Denmark, Tunisia
Group E: Spain, Costa Rica/New Zealand, Germany, Japan
Group F: Belgium, Canada, Morocco, Croatia
Group G: Brazil, Serbia, Switzerland, Cameroon
Group H: Portugal, Ghana, Uruguay, South Korea