There will still be plenty of familiar faces at the Women’s Africa Cup of Nations, which begins this Wednesday (November 9th) in Senegal’s capital, Dakar. As in previous editions, many players playing in France, many of them binational, will appear in the West African or Maghreb selections.
This will be the case in particular for the host country, which has in its group sixteen representatives of clubs from France, including a former major Blue, Claudine Mendy. At 32, after having played 102 matches in the jersey of the France team and won two silver medals at the World Cup in 2009 and 2011, the native of Mantes-la-Jolie (Yvelines) will play her first competition under the colors of the country where both parents were born. His last selection dating back to 2016, the regulations of the International Federation allow the left-back of Bourg-de-Péage to wear the jersey of another country of which he holds the nationality (a minimum period of three years is required).
We can notably cite Sabrina Zazaï (Algeria), Karichma Ekoh (Cameroon), Mélissa Agathe (DR Congo) or Djénéba Tandjan (Guinea). “It’s really special, I hesitated for a long time” “It’s really special, I hesitated for a long time, she told The Team on the phone.
If the CAN had not taken place in Senegal, I probably would not have made that choice. » At home in the sumptuous Dakar Arena (15,000 seats), the Lionesses hope to get back on the podium after a disappointing 5th place in the 2021 edition. “We are here to represent the country proudly and to regain a rank that qualifies us for the World Cup(among the top four).
With the support of the public, we set no limits”
, launches the coach of Senegal, Yacine Messaoudi. The Paris 92 coach will be one of three French technicians in competition with his colleague from Celles-sur-Belle Thierry Vincent (Guinea) and Francis Tuzolana, who coaches the women’s and men’s selections of the DR Congo.Behind Angola, again big favorite after having won eleven of the last twelve editions, the battle promises to be tight for the host country with in particular Tunisia, Cameroon or DR Congo.