ABIDJAN: African football supremo Ahmad Ahmad insisted on Tuesday (Wednesday in Manila) he is not backing down over plans to increase the CAN from 16 to 24 teams despite Cameroon’s organizational struggles.
Back in August, world governing body FIFA appointed a committee to run crisis-hit Cameroonian football amid growing fears the country would not be able to host the 2019 African Cup of Nations (CAN).
And despite the country’s difficulties in completing necessary infrastructure, Confederation of African Football president (CAF) Ahmad said no compromise will be made regarding the number of participating countries.
“If the host country cannot organize it (the CAN) we’ll find another country that can,” Ahmad said on Tuesday during a visit to Abidjan.
The 2019 edition is due to be the first to see 24 teams qualify, a 50 percent increase on previous editions.
“With regards Cameroon 2019, I cannot predict anything but all the authorities within the country right up to the head of state have always assured us they will be ready,” added Ahmad.
Back in August, Ahmad had warned that Cameroon “isn’t ready to welcome even four teams”, although Cameroonian President Paul Biya had insisted his nation “will be ready when the day comes.”