After multiple postponements, the Africa Cup of Nations finally kicks off in Cameroon on Sunday for a monthlong football bonanza culminating in the Feb. 6 final, to be held in the capital of Yaounde.
We will break down the most important games of the competitions and offer you the best betting tips. Our sportsbook is offering a great number of props for every match.
Algeria vs. Sierra Leone
Algeria’s squad is amazing. They are led by the English Premier League stars Riyad Mahrez of Manchester City and Said Benrahma of West Ham, as well as the best player in the FIFA Arab Cup, Yacine Brahimi. They won the last edition of the competitions in Egypt 2019.
Algeria was drawn in Group E together with Cote d’Ivoire, Equatorial Guinea and Sierra Leone and will kick off their campaign against Sierra Leone on Tuesday. They are arguably the team to beat, and they enter this clash as huge favorites to win the three points at -800 on the three-way moneyline according to the latest soccer odds. They are currently unbeaten in 24 matches across all competitions, picking up 18 wins and six draws since their last defeat in October 2019.
They played a friendly match to prepare for the tournament, beating Ghana 3-0 with Napoli’s Adam Ounas and Lyon’s Islam Slimani contributing on the scoresheet. This should be an easy one for the hosts, who will be eager to start with a convincing win. The Leone Stars boast a remarkable 4-4 draw with Nigeria from their qualifying campaign but let’s not forget that Nigeria had already qualified and was missing many important players for that match.
Pick: Algeria -2 (-105)
Nigeria vs. Egypt
Two of the best African teams face each other in Group D in what should be one of the most entertaining matches of the group stages. The two teams will surely qualify in the knockout stages but it’s important to win the group and avoid tougher opposition in the next phase of the competition.
Normally, we won’t see many goals between the African teams, but this specific match is expected to be a goal-fest. Egypt is led by the one and only Mohamed Salah, Liverpool’s star who is enjoying another superb season with his club. Some other important names on Egypt’s squad are Aston Villa’s Mahmoud Hassan Trezeguet, Arsenal’s Mohamed Elneny and Stuttgart’s Omar Marmoush. The rest of the squad is playing in the Egyptian domestic league.
On the other side. Nigeria is fully packed with world-class players. From Everton’s Alex Iwobi, Leicester’s Kelechi Iheanacho and Wilfred Ndidi, Villarreal’s Samuel Chukwueze to Union Berlin’s Taiwo Awoniyi, Nigeria is one of the most talented teams in the competition and they possess amazing firepower. We expect them to score many goals in this competition and we will include them in our soccer picks and parlays.
Pick: Over 2 goals (+110)
Equatorial Guinea vs. Ivory Coast
Ivory Coast features the likes of Manchester United defender Eric Bailly, Burnley’s Maxwell Cornet and AC Milan’s Franck Kessie, one of the best players in the tournament. It also boasts an attacking line of Crystal Palace’s Wilfried Zaha, Arsenal’s Nicholas Pepe and this season’s current UEFA Champions League top scorer, Ajax’s Sebastian Haller. They should easily qualify further in the competition along with Algeria.
On the other side, Equatorial Guinea is not quite a team packed with stars, but they enter this tournament on a five-match unbeaten run. That includes a 1-0 victory over Tunisia in World Cup qualifying, although they failed to qualify for the next World Cup by just two points. They are very organized at the back and it will be very difficult to beat them. If you’re betting online, sometimes you must take some risks and go with the feeling.
Like we said before, it’s very important to start this competition with a win, which will offer you a boost of confidence. The Elephants’ attacking firepower is huge, and we expect them to cover the spread in this match.