The 2022 Africa Women Cup of Nations has been an unprecedented success when it comes to the quality of competition and fan interest, making the ongoing edition in Morocco a watershed moment for women’s football in Africa. A Technical Study Group (TSG) appointed by the Confederation of African Football (CAF) recommended that in order to continue the development and success of the women’s game on the continent, CAF must expand the competition to include sixteen teams. The 2022 edition is the first to feature twelve teams after all prior WAFCON’s were composed of eight teams.
The TSG, composed of experts on African women’s football who are studying styles of play and evaluating the quality of football, explained that more slots in the competition will give more teams opportunities on the highest stage to improve their level of play. Former Namibia women’s national team coach Jacqui Shipanga was the chief advocate on the TSG for expansion, advocating for a sixteen-team competition that will allow for proper representation of the continent’s pool of fifty women’s national teams.
More on the progress in quality of play and the TSG’s advocacy for an expanded field is in the links below.