Among the 40 teams in Africa competing in 10 groups, 8 Arab teams are fighting to qualify for the final and decisive stage, which will include only 10 teams to reserve 5 World Cup seats.
In the first group of African qualifiers for the World Cup, Djibouti does not have many hopes to lead the group in the presence of Algeria, the African champion 2019, Burkina Faso and Niger.
Unfortunately, at the beginning of the journey, the Djibouti team collided with the strongest team in the group to suffer a painful defeat (8-0) against Algeria.
The Desert Foxes, under the leadership of their coach Djamel Belmadi, sent a strong message to all the teams in the group that the lead was unattainable.
The Algerian team proved to be the first candidate to qualify for the final stage of the qualifiers, which will witness two home and away matches against one of the other group champions in a fierce struggle for the World Cup ticket.
Algeria failed to qualify for the 2018 World Cup, but corrected the path by winning the African Nations Cup in Cairo two years ago, to return in 2021 with great determination to return to the World Cup.
The “Jedian Falcons” did not have an opportunity to beat the Atlantic Lions, especially because the bet is related to qualifying for the World Cup, for Sudan to lose a clean double against Morocco in the first round of Group Nine.
Morocco is the holder of the upper hand in the group that includes Guinea and Guinea Bissau along with Sudan, and the next round will witness a difficult confrontation against Guinea in Casablanca.
The victory over Sudan ensured Morocco the first 3 points and the lead, taking advantage of the tie between Guinea and Equatorial Guinea with a goal for each team in the same round.
Group F in the African qualifiers witnessed an Arab competition between Egypt and Libya, where the two teams achieved two victories in the first round to compete early for the lead.
Libya beat Gabon with two goals against a goal with great difficulty, to achieve 3 expensive points before going out to face Angola in the second round.
Unexpectedly, Egypt did not provide a strong performance against Angola, but won a penalty kick that gave it victory (1-0) amid criticism of coach Hossam El Badry and his team.
The Egyptian team missed its first star, Mohamed Salah, the top scorer of Liverpool, due to the red list crisis, but he will join the Pharaohs in the second round against Gabon on September 5, hoping to improve the performance and gain 3 other valuable points.
The third and fourth rounds of the group will witness a strong struggle between Egypt and Libya, back and forth, in order to seize the lead before the last two rounds.
Promise of excitement
The brilliance of the Arab teams and winning 4 victories in the first round, promises extraordinary excitement in the final stage of the qualifiers, which may witness Arab confrontations between the group champions.
Algeria, Morocco, Egypt or Libya maintain the lead of their groups, while waiting for similar results from Tunisia, or a surprise from Mauritania, will increase the chances of Arab confrontations in the decisive round.