Egypt's new Aflemha Online Film Festival will celebrate women filmmakers    State revenues will likely fall by EGP 150 bln in FY 2020/21 on Covid-19    Oman to close land borders again to curb coronavirus    Orascom-Siemens-Arab Contractors consortium signs MoU to build high-speed rail system    Gut bacteria tied to Covid-19 severity    Egypt receives 19 rail carriages from Russia under mega deal    Transmar succeeded in promoting trade, doubling reefer container shipping    New boss Rooney backs Derby to respond after defeat by Rotherham    World Bank provides $200m loan to Egypt for air quality monitoring projects    Egypt detects 887 new coronavirus cases; 54 fatalities on Saturday    CBE offers EGP 16bn T-bills on Sunday    Live score: National Bank of Egypt v Ahly (Egyptian Premier League)    Explainer: Road to Palestinian vote full of obstacles    Tennis: Australian Open arrivals hit by 4 COVID-19 positive tests    Facebook to ban ads promoting weapon accessories, protective gear in US    US state capitals, Washington on alert for possible pro-Trump armed protests    In Photos: Egyptian archaeological mission at Saqqara Necropolis announces new major discoveries    Armin Laschet picked as new leader of Germany's CDU party    Bank ABC acquires Blom Bank Egypt for $480 million: Sources    Egypt's Sisi discusses bilateral ties, regional developments with Sudanese delegation    Egypt's Mostaqbal Watan party dominates the leading posts of parliament's 25 committees    Egypt's budget deficit to GDP ratio receded to 3.6% in first half of FY2020/21, revenues rose by 16%    Mubarak-era politician Safwat El-Sherif dies aged 88    Egypt's president, Siemens CEO discuss final deal on construction of electric train system    Hollywood actor Mena Massoud visits Giza pyramids, says is proud of Egyptian culture    Egypt reopens airspace and resumes flights with Qatar    Egypt, Tunisia to establish maritime trade route    Egypt eyes gradual return for tourism after revenues fall to $4 bln in 2020    Seasoned Egyptian screenwriter Wahid Hamed dies at 76    Coronavirus strikes Egypt's youth team as 17 players, coach test positive    Nassef Sawiris plans to up his stake in owner of New York Knicks, Rangers    Cairo International Book Fair suspended for five months over coronavirus concerns    Egypt unveils largest archaeological discovery in 2020 with over 100 intact sarcophagi    Trump says won't blame Egypt for being ‘upset' over GERD dispute with Ethiopia    Egypt, Ethiopia, Sudan to resume Nile dam talks today    Global Finance: Egypt's Tarek Amer among the world's top 20 central bank governors    The Facebook Preacher's Search for Fame, and Egypt's Economy    Egypt calls on UNSC to address oil spill risks off Yemen coast    Egypt economically strong in face of COVID-19, reforms ongoing: International Cooperation Minister    Arafa Holding reports $144,000 COVID-19-related losses in April    Egypt's efforts in Libya to activate free will of Libyan people: Al-Sisi    Hyksos campaigns were internal takeover, not foreign invaders: study    COVID-19 affects Egypt sporting clubs    COVID-19 will soon turn to seasonal like swine flu: Presidential Health Advisor    ‘Egypt's Support' coalition convenes to discuss its Senate election list    Robbery attempt leads to discovery of Ptolemaic monuments in Qena    Flouting international guidance, Ethiopia unilaterally starts filling its Nile dam    Zaha speaks out after online racial abuse    

Thank you for reporting!
This image will be automatically disabled when it gets reported by several people.

To Russia, the hard way
Published in Al-Ahram Weekly on 28 - 07 - 2015

African sides have learned who they will face after the 2018 World Cup qualifying draw was held Saturday in St Petersburg, Russia.
Fifty-three African countries were in the draw, with only Zimbabwe missing following their expulsion by FIFA for failing to pay a former coach.
Africa has been allocated five spots in the finals, which will be played in Russia from 14 June to 15 July. There will be three rounds of qualifying for the African sides.
Round one features the lowest 26 ranked countries on the continent in FIFA's July rankings. The winners of those ties advance to round two where they will join the remaining 27 highest-ranked teams.
In the final round, five groups of four teams will meet both home and away and the winner of each group will qualify for Russia 2018.
First round:
Thirteen two-legged ties, played home and away, between
5-13 October 2015:
Somalia x Niger
South Sudan x Mauritania
Gambia x Namibia
Sao Tome e Principe x Ethiopia
Chad x Sierra Leone
Comoros x Lesotho
Djibouti x Swaziland
Eritrea x Botswana
Seychelles x Burundi
Liberia x Guinea Bissau
Mauritius x Kenya
Tanzania x Malawi
Central African Republic x Madagascar
Second Round:
The winners of the first round, plus 27 highest-ranked teams in Africa. All 40 teams paired into 20 ties, play home and away, between 9-17 November 2015:
Somalia/Niger x Cameroon
South Sudan/Mauritania x Tunisia
Gambia/Namibia v Guinea
Sao Tome e Principe/ Ethiopia x Congo Brazzaville
Chad/Sierra Leone x Egypt
Comoros/Lesotho x Ghana
Djibouti/Swaziland x Nigeria
Eritrea/Botswana x Mali
Seychelles/Burundi x DR Congo
Liberia/Guinea Bissau x Ivory Coast
Central African Republic/Madagascar x Senegal
Mauritius/Kenya x Cape Verde Islands
Tanzania/Malawi x Algeria
Sudan x Zambia
Libya x Rwanda
Morocco x Equatorial Guinea
Mozambique x Gabon
Benin x Burkina Faso
Togo x Uganda
Angola x South Africa
Third round:
Twenty winners of the second round will form five groups of four teams who will meet both home and away. Matches are to be played between 3 October 2016 and 14 November 2017. The five group winners qualify for the 2018 World Cup in Russia.
After fulfilling his duties as a draw assistant at Saturday's preliminary draw, Cameroonian goal scoring legend Samuel Eto'o gave his view on what to expect in the African zone, where the first round of the qualifying competition begins on 5 October.
“The gap between the strongest teams and the less-fancied ones has closed a lot. In fact, there's hardly a gap to speak of anymore,” said Eto'o. “I remember going into matches 10 or 15 years ago thinking: ‘There's such a big difference between us that we're bound to win'. But these days you're thinking: ‘This team is going to make life hard for us', which is great for Africa as a whole.”

Clic here to read the story from its source.