The Winners of Africa Cup of Nations From 1957-Present

Last updated on February 11th, 2024 at 10:58 pm

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Surprisingly, Ivory Coast came from one goal down to beat the Super Eagles of Nigeria 2-1 in the 2023 AFCON final. Ivorians are the host and Africa’s champion. Congratulations to them!

The Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) is the juiciest soccer competition on the African continent, held biennially. It is organized by the Confederation of African Football (CAF).

It began in 1957 with only three teams: Egypt, Ethiopia, and Sudan. South Africa, which could have been one of the pioneer teams was disqualified due to its Apartheid Policies.

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Egypt won the maiden edition, beating Ethiopia 4-0 at the 23,000-capacity Municipal Stadium in Khartoum, Sudan, on February 16, 1957.

Countries with the most titles

  • Egypt: 7 times
  • Cameroon: 5
  • Ghana: 4
  • Nigeria and Ivory Coast: 3
  • DR Congo and Algeria: 2 times
  • Ethiopia, Congo Brazzaville, Morocco, South Africa, Tunisia, Zambia, and Senegal won it once.

Expansion

Like the first edition, only three teams participated, it expanded to four teams in 1962 with first-timers Tunisia and Uganda joining while Sudan was out.

As more African National Teams signified interest in joining the soccer fiesta, the number of participating teams was increased to eight in 1968 with first-timer, DR Congo beating the Black Stars of Ghana 1-0 at the Hailé Sélassié Stadium, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.

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Only eight teams participated in the 12 consecutive editions from 1968-1990; it increased to 12 in  1992; 15 in the 20th edition 16 teams in 1998 until 2019 when 24 teams featured in the continental soccer festival.

The organizers switched the competition to odd years in 2013 to prevent it from clashing with the FIFA World Cup, which is held every four years (even years).

Most successful teams

Pharaohs of Egypt are the most successful team on the Africa Cup of Nations winner list, raising the AFCON Trophy seven times in 1957, 1959, 1986, 1998, 2006, 2008, and 2010.

No country has ever won the AFCON competition three consecutive times except Egypt, achieving the feat in 2006, 2008, and 2010.

Indomitable Lions of Cameroon and Black Stars of Ghana are the second and third most successful teams in AFCON with five and four titles respectively.

The Super Eagles of Nigeria and Ivorian team are the fourth most successful team, winning three times.

The Nigerian side may lift the AFCON trophy for the fourth time if they defeat the host country Cote d’Ivoire in the 2023 AFCON finals. However, if the Ivorian team were to win, they would match Nigeria’s success in the tournament.

List of champions and runner-ups from 1957 to present:

1957

  • Winner: Egypt
  • Runner-up: Ethiopia
  • Host: Sudan

1959

  • Winner: Egypt
  • Runner-up: Sudan
  • Host: Egypt

1962

  • Winner: Ethiopia
  • Runner-up:Egypt
  • Host: Ethiopia

1963

  • Champions: Ghana
  • Runner-up: Sudan
  • Host: Ghana

1965

  • Winner: Ghana
  • Runner-up: Tunisia
  • Host: Tunisia

1968

  • Champion: DR Congo (Zaire)
  • Runner-up: Ghana
  • Host: Ethiopia
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1970

  • Winner: Sudan
  • Runner-up: Ghana
  • Host: Sudan

1972

  • Winner: Congo Brazzaville
  • Runner-up: Mali
  • Host: Cameroon

1974

  • Winner: DR Congo
  • Runner-up: Zambia
  • Host: Egypt

1976

  • Winner: Morocco
  • Runner-up: Guinea
  • Host: Morocco

1978

  • Champion: Ghana
  • Runner-up: Uganda
  • Host: Ghana

1980

  • Champion: Nigeria
  • Runner-up: Algeria
  • Host: Nigeria

1982

  • Champion: Ghana
  • Runner-up: Libya
  • Host: Libya

1984

  • Champion: Cameroon
  • Runner-up: Nigeria
  • Host: Ivory Coast

1986

  • Champion: Egypt
  • Runner-up: Nigeria
  • Host: Egypt

1988

  • Champion: Cameroon
  • Runner-up:
  • Host: Morocco

1990

  • Champion: Algeria
  • Runner-up: Nigeria
  • Host: Algeria

1992

  • Champion: Cote d’Ivoire
  • Runner-up: Ghana
  • Host: Senegal

1994

  • Champion: Nigeria
  • Runner-up: Zambia
  • Host: Tunisia

1996

  • Champion: South Africa
  • Runner-up: Tunisia
  • Host: South Africa

1998

  • Winner: Egypt
  • Runner-up: South Africa
  • Host: Burkina Faso

2000

  • Winner: Cameroon
  • Runner-up: Nigeria
  • Host: Ghana and Nigeria

2002

  • Winner: Cameroon
  • Runner-up: Senegal
  • Host: Mali

2004

  • Winner: Tunisia
  • Runner-up: Morocco
  • Host: Tunisia

2006

  • Champion: Egypt
  • Runner-up: Cote d’Ivoire
  • Host: Egypt

2008

  • Winner: Egypt
  • Runner-up: Cameroon
  • Host: Ghana

2010

  • Champion: Egypt
  • Second position: Ghana
  • Host: Angola

2012

  • Winner: Zambia
  • Second position: Cote d’Ivoire
  • Host: Joint host (Equatorial Guinea and Gabon)

2013

  • Winner: Nigeria
  • Second position: Burkina Faso
  • Host: South Africa

2015

  • Winner: Cote d’Ivoire (Ivory Coast)
  • Second position: Ghana
  • Host: Equatorial Guinea

2017

  • Winner: Cameroon
  • Second position: Egypt
  • Host: Gabon

2019

  • Champion: Algeria
  • Second position: Senegal
  • Host: Egypt

2021

  • Champion: Senegal
  • Second position: Egypt
  • Host: Cameroon

Note: The 2021 AFCON tournament was shifted to 2022 due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

2023: Nigeria vs Ivory Coast

  • Champion: Ivory Coast
  • Runner-up: Nigeria
  • Host: Cote d’Ivoire

The Ivorians came from 1 goal down to beat Nigeria 2-1.

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To book a place in the finals, the Super Eagles beat Bafana Bafana of South Africa 4-2 on penalty, while Elephants of Cote d’Ivoire caged the Leopards of DR Congo 1-0 during the semi-finals.

AFCON Fact Sheet Between Nigeria and Ivory Coast

  • Both countries emerged from Group A and are tournament favorites.
  • They had earlier clashed at the group stage on January 18, 2024, when Captain William Troost-Ekong struck home the only goal of the match for Nigeria in the 55th-minute spot kick. It came after a VAR review showed that young Ivorian defender Ousmane Diomande had impeded Victor Osimhen.
  • It is the first time Super Eagles and Elephants will be meeting at the AFCON final.
  • Nigeria have lifted the trophy three times while Ivory Coast lifted it twice (1992 and 2015). With latest victory by the Ivorian team, it’s now third time.
  • Nigeria were runner-up four times (1984, 1988, 1990, and 2000) while Ivory Coast were runner-up twice (2006, 2012).

The next AFCON will be held in Morocco, let’s meet again in 2025!

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