CAF, the Confederation of African Football has officially launched the African super League, a continental variant of the much contested European Super League.
CAF President, Mr. Patrice Motsepe announced the development at the 44th CAF Ordinary General Assembly held in Tanzania.
The project has been in the works since it was recommended by FIFA President, Gianni Infantino, in 2020, and has the backing of FIFA, unlike Europe’s doomed Super League club project in 2021.
The competition, which is slated to be the top football event on the continent, has had its founding clubs announced by CAF.
CAF announced that the African Super League will be operated on a budget of 100 million dollars and will kick off in August 2023.
The Super League is a brand new 24 club super league that seeks to transform African football and establish itself as the continent’s richest competition.
After UEFA rejected the competition, the African soccer governing body decided to implement it in the continent last year.
Speaking at the presentation of the competition was CAF President Patrice Motsepe in Algeria, the host country of the 2022 Championship of African Nations.
According to Motsepe, CAF will utilize a portion of the 50 million dollars from the Super League to enhance football on the continent, which has lagged behind other regions of the world in terms of quality. The league also aim to keep the best players in Africa.
He declared that this year’s initial game will feature 8 to 12 teams, while the next two seasons’ games will feature 16 teams and 24 teams, respectively.
None of the eight teams named are from Nigeria, and it is quite likely that no Nigerian club will take part in this year’s competition.
Al Ahly (Egypt), Raja and Wydad Casablanca (Morocco), Esperance (Tunisia), Horoya SC (Guinea), Heart of Oaks (Ghana), Mamelodi Sundowns (South Africa), and Simba SC ( Tanzania) are among the teams named.
As the competition is scheduled to begin in August 2023, CAF delegates will visit the teams in February.
What is the African Super League all about?
According to Motsepe, the goal is to increase competitiveness and advance African football growth. Participating teams are also required to have an academy and a women’s team.
Between May and August, at least 197 games will be played, with the final game likely to follow a Super Bowl style.
Clubs have been excited about the competition as a result of the estimated prize money for the winner being much larger than what is available for CAF Champions League winners.
The CAF president further announced that each team participating in the cross-continental competition’s inaugural season would get 2.5 million dollars at the outset to aid in funding its preparations and participation.
Motsepe expressed excitement for a battle among the three CAF events and predicted that others will provide greater financial support.
Motsepe urged African leaders to support the building of CAF-approved stadiums so that every club may play its football in its home ground.
Owner of Cape Town City FC John Comitis described the league as a “super dumb idea,” so not everyone is thrilled about it yet.