Underdogs Upset the Order in AFCON 2023
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Underdogs Upset the Order in AFCON 2023
By Mangek Promise

Surprising victories have sent shockwaves through the early stages of the African Cup of Nations (AFCON) 2023. Equatorial Guinea, Mozambique, and Cape Verde have all secured unexpected wins against former champions, leaving fans, and analysts on the edge of their seats.

Underdogs Challenge the Champions Mozambique, ranked 111th in FIFA rankings, held Egypt to a 2-2 draw, while Cape Verde upset Ghana with a 2-1 victory. Equatorial Guinea took the lead against Nigeria, eventually settling for a 1-1 draw. These impressive performances have set the tone for the tournament, with anticipation for further upsets palpable.

Following Ghana’s loss to Cape Verde, an upset fan confronted coach Chris Hughton, challenging him to improve or leave. Hughton expressed disappointment with the result and highlighted the team’s intentions and efforts. This loss follows a previous defeat by the underrated Comoros Islands in the World Cup qualifiers, marking a concerning trend for the team led by Hughton, who has a record of four wins in 11 games.


History of Upsets

The AFCON2023 has seen smaller teams like Cape Verde and Equatorial Guinea stun football giants Ghana and Nigeria. This echoes a trend of underdogs making their mark in previous tournaments, with Ghana suffering a group stage exit in the 2021 edition, and Algeria’s title defense ending in disappointment in 2019. These unexpected outcomes reflect the growing competitiveness in African football, making the tournament more dynamic and unpredictable.

Five-time champions Cameroon were held to a draw by 10-man Guinea, leaving both teams with work to do to qualify for the knockout stages. The underdog teams’ performances have highlighted the unpredictable nature of the AFCON tournament, creating an exciting football spectacle to watch.