CHAN 2018 kicks off with these four groups

Bessie Dean
January 14, 2018

Following CAF's decision to hand Morocco hosting rights for the 2018 CHAN (after stripping Kenya of the duty), the locally-based Atlas Lions now have a chance to add to the country's growing list of football achievements.

It has been tried in the Italian Serie A and German Bundesliga this season and debuted in England last week.

The Total African Nations Championship (sometimes referred to as African Championship of Nations or CHAN) is a football tournament which was first announced on 11 September 2007. The last edition in 2016 was held in Rwanda.

The north African kingdom wanted the elite African national team competition postponed because they feared visiting supporters might be infected with the deadly Ebola virus.

Known as "The Spider", Hazzaz was part of the Morocco 1970 World Cup squad and the team that won the Africa Cup of Nations for the only time six years later.

The suspension was later lifted and relations between CAF and Morocco have warmed since Ahmad Ahmad of Malagasy a year ago replaced long-serving Cameroonian Issa Hayatou as CAF boss.

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This will be the first official worldwide match between Morocco and Mauritania, according to FIFA's statistical database.

Al Jazeera's Sana Hamouche reports from Casablanca, Morocco.

Nigeria will be facing Rwanda on Monday before taking on Libya and Equatorial Guinea, who are also in their group.

During the same day, Zambia will face Uganda, while Cote d'Ivoire will play Namibia for the opener of Group B.

Group winners and runners-up advance to the quarter-finals and the eventual champions pocket $1.25 million (about 1.050 million euro).

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