Egyptian football chiefs who showed up at a CAF executive meeting in Dakar, Senegal have vowed to organize a ‘flawless’ Africa Cup of Nations after securing the right to host the tournament later this year.
Celebrating the decision by the continent’s governing body for the sport on Tuesday to entrust them with the right to host the tournament, the Egyptians promised a “beautiful organization” of Africa’s most prestigious football competition.
The tournament which has been expanded from 16 to 24 teams, holds from 15 June to 13 July, 2019.
“After analyzing the situation, after listening to the two candidates (South Africa and Egypt), we voted at the executive committee. And today I am happy to announce that Egypt has been chosen to host the 2019 AfCON” Ahmad Ahmad, CAF president declared.
Ahmad said all preparations toward the tournament will start without delay.
"CAF will work closely with Egypt so that we can move forward quickly” the CAF boss said.
Egypt competed with South Africa to host the 2019 tournament after Cameroon’s rights to organize it were withdrawn by CAF, citing delays in the construction of infrastructures linked to the competition and a precarious security situation.
An Egyptian delegate speaking to APA on condition of anonymity vowed: "We will be ready (within 5 months) of course. We have stadiums, hospitals and very good infrastructure as well as very good hotels. In addition we have more than one hundred million football fans”.
He thanked the countries that voted for Egypt, reassuring them that his country would do "its utmost" to ensure that participating teams will be in the best conditions.
"Congratulations Egypt! Congratulations to all Egyptians. We are really happy today" another Egyptian delegate shouted, fluttering his country's flag in celebratory fashion.
“We are waiting for you in Egypt, especially in Cairo, Ismailia, Port Said, Alexandria” he screamed with delight.