AFCON 2023 PREVIEW: After 13 years, Mozambique make comeback appearance
December 26, 2023
- By Efosa Taiwo
After missing out on the African Cup of Nations for over a decade, the Mambas are back on the grandest stage of African football and will go all out to leave a lasting impression in the minds of African football fans.
Though not among the favourites to win the AFCON in Cote d’Voire, Mozambique could prove to be a bogey team for the big guns, trickling their way past their best finish in the competition: the group stage.
Their chances though come slim as they find themselves squared with Ghana, Egypt and Cape Verde in the same group, it will take an extraordinary performance for Mozambique to advance to the next round.
A former Mozambique international, Chiquinho Conde is among the handful of African indigenous coaches that will be on parade in Cote d’ Voire when the AFCON kicks off.
Took over the reins of the senior national team in October 2021, and qualifying them for the AFCON after 13 long years, confidence and expectations are high on Conde to pull off the ‘impossible’ in the history of Mozambique, and achieve a second round finish.
Plying his trade in the capital of Spain with Atletico Madrid, the experienced and solid Reinildo Mandava is one of the best exports out of the East African country.
Confident, aware, tough and aerially adept, his qualities from the back will prove to be useful in the Mambas’ quest for an unpredictable run in the AFCON.
Pacy, nimble, a pack of rocket shots, Geny Catamo is a nightmare for full backs down the flanks, when in his elements.
The 22-year-old has warmed himself into the Mozambique national team after impressive performances at his clubside, Sporting CP.
Heavily linked to Arsenal, Catamo would have the African stage a veritable platform to sell himself to the best of scouts.
Egypt vs. Mozambique – January 14, 2024
Cape Verde vs. Mozambique – January 19, 2024
Mozambique vs. Ghana – January 23, 2024