2022 Africa Cup of Nations – AFCON Full Betting Guide

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The 2022 Africa Cup of Nations (also known as AFCON 2021 or CAN 2021) is poised to be the 33rd edition of the Africa Cup of Nations. Set to take place biannually, usually around January, this is the men’s football event for the nations of Africa that have qualified for the final tournament. Read on to discover the best Africa Cup of Nations betting sites, as well as the various betting opportunities this prestigious tournament offers.

 

Tournament Structure for the African Cup of Nations

  • A total of 24 teams compete in the African Cup of Nations, which usually takes place every 2 years. The hosts – Cameroon in this instance – qualify automatically, while the other 23 teams earn their place in the tournament through a qualifying tournament featuring 54 countries. After a preliminary round through which 3 of the lowest-ranked 6 teams qualify, 48 teams are divided into 12 groups of 4, with each team playing each other twice. The top 2 teams from each group will progress to the tournament finals. Qualification for the 2023 AFCON, which is due to begin in June of the same year in the Ivory Coast, will begin in September 2022.
  • Once the final 24 teams are confirmed, a draw will take place to split them into 6 groups of 4 teams. Each team faces every group member once during this stage, with the top two from each group qualifying for the knockout stage automatically. On top of the 12 group winners and runners-up, the four third-placed teams with the highest points totals also progress to the next round.
  • In the knockout stages, winners are decided through a single-legged fixture, with extra time and penalty shoot-outs taking place to decide the winner if necessary. Teams start off in the round of 16, with the winners progressing to the quarter-finals, followed by the semi-finals. The losers of the semi-finals compete in a third-place play-off against each other, while the winners face-off in the final to decide the winner of the competition.
  • The final will take place in Paul Biya Olembe Stadium which is in northern Yaoundé, Cameroon. The team that wins will pick up $4.5 million in winnings.

Best Betting Sites for Africa Cup of Nations Betting

#1
bet365
  • Wide variety of AFCON outright markets
  • Extensive range of submarkets
  • Up to £100 in bet credits
T&Cs APPLY, 18+ ONLY

18+ - Offer for new customers at bet365. Min deposit requirement. Free Bets are paid as Bet Credits and are available for use upon settlement of bets to value of qualifying deposit. Min odds, bet and payment method exclusions apply. Returns exclude Bet Credits stake. Time limits and Full T&Cs apply. BeGambleAware.org #ad

#2
Betfair
  • Great for high priced African Cup of Nations odds
  • Fast withdrawals
  • Cash out feature
T&Cs APPLY, 18+ ONLY

New customer offer. Place a min £10 bet on the Sportsbook on odds of min 1/2 (1.5), get £30 in Free Bets. Rewards valid for 30 days. SMS verification required. Only deposits via cards or Apple Pay will qualify. T&Cs apply. Please Gamble Responsibly.Full T&Cs apply. BeGambleAware.org #ad

#3
Paddy Power
  • Expect boosted Afcon 2021 odds
  • Create your own bet with Same Game Multi
  • £20 Risk Free First Bet
T&Cs APPLY, 18+ ONLY

18+ New customers only. Place your FIRST bet on any sportsbook market and if it loses we will refund your stake in CASH. Max refund for this offer is £20. Only deposits made using cards or Apple Pay will qualify for this promotion. T&Cs apply. Paddy's Rewards Club: Get a £10 free bet when you place 5x bets of £10+. Full T&Cs apply. BeGambleAware.org #ad

#4
BetVictor
BetVictor
  • Great Afcon betting odds
  • Very good support including live chat
  • Super bet builder
T&Cs APPLY, 18+ ONLY

18+ New customers only. Deposit, opt-in and place your first bet on any football market within 7 days of opening your account. We’ll refund up to £30 in cash if your 1st bet loses. T&Cs Apply, see below. begambleaware.org | Please gamble responsibly.

#5
BoyleSports
  • High quality Afcon odds
  • £25 in free bets
  • Reliable mobile app
T&Cs APPLY, 18+ ONLY

*New UK customers (Excluding NI) only. Mobile only. £20 in FREE Bets (FB) as £10 in sports bets & a £10 casino bonus (CB). Min stake £10. Min odds Evs. FB applied on 1st settlement of any qualifying bet. FB 7 day expiry. 1 FB offer per customer, household & IP address only. Payment restrictions. 14 days to accept £10 CB, then active for 3 days. CB 5x wagering & max redeemable £100. Game restrictions apply. Cashed out/Free Bets won’t apply. 30 days to qualify. 18+. Full T&Cs apply. BeGambleAware.org #ad

Best Bookies for Africa Cup of Nations – Top 5 Ranked

#1 bet365

#2 Betfair

#3 Paddy Power

#4 BetVictor

#5 BoyleSports

 

African Cup of Nations Betting Odds, Promotions, Tips & Predictions 2022

  • Like its European equivalent, Euro 2020, the African Cup of Nations 2021 will, in fact, take place in 2022 but remain branded as planned and will be listed as a 2021 tournament. The 33rd edition of the Africa Cup of Nations was initially scheduled to take place in June and July 2021, before being moved to January and February 2021 due to unfavourable climatic conditions. However, it was forced to be rescheduled again because of the effects of the global pandemic. The competition is now underway in host nation Cameroon. So far we have seen great football and a few inspiring upsets.

Now that both semi-finals have been played, the AFCON Finals 2022 schedule is as follows:

Match for 3rd PlaceBurkina Faso vs CameroonFebruary 5, 7pm GMT
FinalSenegal vs EgyptFebruary 6, 7pm GMT

African Cup of Nations Betting Odds 2022

Match Odds* for the Final, according to Betfair:

Country WinOddsBookmakers
Senegal13/10bet365
Draw13/8Coral
Egypt29/10Ladbrokes

*Odds subject to change.

African Cup of Nations Betting Tips & Predictions 2022

  • From the beginning of the tournament, there was plenty of attention surrounding Cameroon, who are looking to make a big impression on home soil. The 2017 champions had a relatively straightforward looking group that also contains Ethiopia, Cape Verde, and Burkina Faso. While they may not be the powerhouses of yesteryear, they still have a rather enviable squad that includes the likes of Ajax shot-stopper Andre Onana, and Bayern Munich star Eric Maxim Choupo-Moting. Cameroon kicked off their campaign against Burkina Faso, and they appeared to be decent value with bookies at 9/1. Eventually, made it to the semi-final, where were eliminated by Egypt.
  • Of course, Egypt is also garnering serious interest from football fans, especially as they boast one of the leading marksmen in world football in Mohamed Salah. The Liverpool hitman has already plundered home 16 goals in the Premier League, and he has had 25 goal involvements with the Reds this season. He is always a slippery customer, and if he’s firing on all cylinders, Egypt will take some stopping. They are seven-time champions, and they completed a three-peat between 2006 and 2010, so their credentials are unquestioned.
  • As things stand, Senegal has already made it to the final, beating Burkina Faso 3 – 1 in the semi, while Salah’s Egypt edged Cameroon on penalties.

AFCON Final Prediction and Tips

Despite Salah’s brilliance, Senegal is the current favourite at the bookies. These markets can obviously change fast, depending how much steam comes in on either side. Right now, we like Egypt at 29/10, and we expect this number to go down as more Salah fans begin placing bets on their favourite. We suggest to get these odds while they are hot.

African Cup of Nations Betting Promotions 2022

As well as boasting superb Africa Cup of Nations betting odds, Ladbrokes also offer a cracking welcome offer of £20 in free bets once newcomers deposit and bet £5 – this is perfect for African Cup of Nations betting.
Another site promoting very good Afcon 2022 odds is Betfred, where new customers can enjoy £40 in free bets, and they can also pick up 30 free spins.

 

5 Reasons to Bet on the African Cup of Nations

  • Africa has arguably never been blessed with this much talent at the same time. Saido Mane, Mohammed Salah, Achraf Hakimi and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang are just a few big names who are expected to sprinkle their magic at this competition.
  • Discover Africa’s next breakout stars. AFCON is a glorious opportunity for young players to showcase their talent to the rest of the world.
  • Witness a beautiful cultural exchange. Passionate fans from 24 different countries along the African continent are brought together through their love for football. The different backgrounds, religions, ethnicities and more make for an amazing atmosphere.
  • There’s plenty of value to pounce on. Many punters and bookies are more knowledgeable about European tournaments than AFCON. This represents an opportunity to gain an edge and benefit from greater odds.
  • Expand your football horizons. Exploring new tournaments is a great way to broaden your understanding of football and betting.

 

African Cup of Nations Betting Sites With Live Streaming

 

Popular African Cup of Nations Betting Markets

There’s a lot of value for punters to be found in the Africa Cup of Nations. Let’s go through some popular betting types at the AFCON, and how you should approach them:

Full-Time Result Betting

The simplest bet of them all, full-time result allows you to predict the outcome of a single match. There are three possibilities here: Team A wins, draw or Team B wins. Value will be rife throughout the tournament – look out for teams that are being wrongly priced for one reason or another, and take advantage of these situations. Watch as many games as you can, prepare yourself with the latest team news and stats, and, most importantly, keep a cool head.

Best African Cup of Nations betting site for full-time result: Coral

Under Goals Betting

The Africa Cup of Nations is known for having a lot of cagey affairs, with teams unwilling to commit many men forward, resulting in a lack of goals. In fact, if we compare the goal statistics for recent AFCON tournaments with the World Cup, the Euros and the Copa America, it quickly becomes apparent that this tournament is the most goal-shy.

TournamentAverage Goals Per Game
AFCON 20191.96
AFCON 20172.06
World Cup 20182.64
World Cup 20142.67
Euro 20162.12
Euro 20122.45
Copa America 20192.31
Copa America 20162.84

With UK punters accustomed to goal fests in the Premier League, Champions League, World Cups and Euros, this data may suggest a mentality shift is required when betting on the Africa Cup of Nations. With goals hard to come by, under 2.5 goals could be the market to bet on here.

Best African Cup of Nations betting site for under goals: William Hill

Outright Betting

The first thing that comes to mind when we talk about outright football betting is predicting the winner of the competition. Unlike the World Cup, which has been dominated by a small group of teams and only claimed by 8 countries, the AFCON has seen 14 different winners. While predicting who that will be is no easy task – especially before it starts – analysing a team’s form in the run-up to the tournament can give you a good insight as to who might go all the way. The AFCON qualifiers – which are currently ongoing – present an excellent opportunity to recognise which teams are thriving.

If you’re not confident about that, another outright involves predicting the group stage winners, or which teams will advance to the knockout stages. This is the part of the tournament where the best teams can really assert their dominance against the lesser-ranked ones.

Moving away from team betting, punting on the Africa Cup of Nations top scorer or Golden Boot winner is one of the most entertaining bets you’ll find. With superstars like Mohammed Salah, Saido Mane, Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Hakim Ziyech all taking part, there’s plenty of talent to get behind. Keep in mind that the Golden Boot winner is not necessarily linked to the team that wins the tournament. In fact, none of the top goal scorers in the previous 3 AFCONs played for the tournament winners. This basically boils down to the following piece of advice: back the player, not the team (though of course, a better team helps).

Best African Cup of Nations betting site for outright betting: bwin

 

History of the Africa Cup of Nations

The first African Cup of Nations was organised one year after the formation of the Confederation of African Football, in 1957. The inaugural tournament took place in Sudan, but it looked very different from what we see today, featuring only 3 teams: Egypt, Sudan and Ethiopia. South Africa were also meant to take part, but got disqualified for political reasons. As you can imagine, it was quite a strange tournament and Ethiopia qualified to the final despite not having played a game, where they lost to winners Egypt.

As the years went by, the competition gradually expanded and included more teams, until it reached the current number of 24 during the 2019 edition. The Africa Cup of Nations has taken place 32 times, with Egypt historically being the most successful side. The “Pharaohs” have claimed the prize 7 times, followed by Cameroon with 5, Ghana with 4 and Nigeria with 3. The current reigning champions are Algeria, having clinched the trophy during AFCON 2019.

The 2021 tournament had originally been planned to take place in June and July of the same year but owing to concerns that the summer weather in Cameroon would create unfavourable conditions, the tournament was brought forward six months to January. Then, after the Coronavirus pandemic took hold of world sport, the tournament was postponed 12 months until January 2022.

 

Recent Africa Cup of Nations Winners

YearWinnerRunner-Up
2019AlgeriaSenegal
2017CameroonEgypt
2015Ivory CoastGhana
2013NigeriaBurkina Faso
2012ZambiaIvory Coast
2010EgyptGhana
2008EgyptCameroon
2006EgyptIvory Coast
2004TunisiaMorocco
2002CameroonSenegal
2000CameroonNigeria
1998EgyptSouth Africa
1996South AfricaTunisia
1994NigeriaZambia
1992Ivory CoastGhana
1990AlgeriaNigeria

 

African Cup of Nations Key Stats

  • 1
    Samuel Eto’o is the all-time Africa Cup of Nations top scorer with 18 goals, which he won in 2000 and 2002.
  • 2
    Ndaye Mulamba holds the record for most goals in a single tournament, with a staggering nine goals during the 1974 tournament.
  • 3
    At 45 years of age, goalkeeper Essam El-Hadary became the oldest player to play in the competition. His last appearance came in a 2-1 loss to Cameroon in the 2017 AFCON final.
  • 4
    The prize money awarded to the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations winners, Algeria, amounted to $4.5m.
  • 5
    Ahmed Hassan and Rigobert Song of Egypt and Cameroon respectively are the two players with the most appearances at the Africa Cup of Nations, having featured in eight different editions.

 

Upcoming Sporting Events

 

Similar Tournaments to the African Cup of Nations

  • 21st November – 18th December 2022, FIFA World Cup 2022: The first ever non summer FIFA World Cup which will take place during the winter of 2022 during the European football season.
  • 14th June to 14th July 2024, UEFA European Championship: The next edition of the European equivalent of AFCON which will be held in the summer of 2024 in Germany.
  • 10th June – 12th July 2024, CONMEBOL Copa América: The 2024 CONMEBOL Copa América will be the 48th edition of the Copa América, South America's men's international football championship.

 

Africa Cup of Nations Betting FAQs

Punters are spoiled for choice when it comes to betting on the Africa Cup of Nations, but if we had to pick three, we would pick bet365, Betfair and BetVictor.
Every AFCON 2021 match will be broadcasted live on Eurosport 2.
The next Africa Cup of Nations will take place in January 2022, and will be hosted by Cameroon.
A total of 24 teams take part in the competition.
Egypt have won the Africa Cup of Nations 7 times, making them the most successful team in AFCON history.

 

ThePuntersPage Final Say

The African Cup of Nations is a unique tournament that brings together the best teams on the African continent to determine the best of them all. Players and fans from across the continent approach it with high ambitions and expectations, and this makes for a truly captivating spectacle. As always, don’t forget to do the necessary research and stay disciplined while betting on this tournament – we wish you the best of luck!