The Africa Cup of Nations has made for absorbing viewing so far, even though there have been some rather controversial moments (referees blowing up for full-time earlier!). That aside, AFCON has reached the knockout stages, and there are some fascinating clashes to look forward to in the Round of 16.
Like any other major international tournament, there have been some upsets, and you can expect plenty more twists and turns with the Round of 16 kicking off on Sunday when Burkina Faso take on Gabon.
With that in mind, Freebets have gone through the Round of 16 with a fine toothcomb, and picked out some tips for you to pay attention to.
Reigning champions crash out
There have already been some notable upsets, perhaps the biggest shock to date was seeing the reigning champions Algeria crash out at the group stages after a 3-1 defeat to the Ivory Coast. Yet, while you may think Egypt would curry the shortest odds, hosts Cameroon are currently trading as favourites, and they are 4/1 with bet365 to be crowned champions.
Egypt, however, completed a hat-trick of titles between 2006 and 2010, and they will be looking to scale new heights once again. They will be up in action on Wednesday against the Ivory Coast, and while Mohamed Salah is Egypt’s go-to man, the Ivory Coast will be a threat. The way they dismantled Algeria was impressive, and they could go deeper in the tournament.
Home comforts for Cameroon?
Cameroon knows what it takes to win AFCON, having previously lifted the trophy in 2017. And in this edition, the hosts have impressed so far with skipper Vincent Aboubakar netting five goals to date, equalling the tournament record for most goals scored in the group stages.
Of course, being the home nation, comes with added pressure, and expectation levels ratchet up a level or two. And the Indomitable Lions will fancy their chances of progressing to the quarter-finals.
Comoros, however, will be no pushovers, and they sent Ghana packing with a 3-2 win. Intriguingly, Comoros are at an enticing 11/1 with Paddy Power to advance to the last eight.
Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang distraction for Gabon
For Gabon, some of the build-up to AFCON was unfortunately distracted when Arsenal striker Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang tested positive for COVID-19. Then, later testing emerged that he suffered cardiac lesions after contracting COVID, and he has since been released from the Gabon camp.
That aside, Gabon weren’t particularly convincing during the group stages, and they will face Burkina Faso in the first Round of 16 match on Sunday. Burkina Faso gave a good account of themselves against Cameroon, and this could be an intriguing encounter. Burkina Faso are at a short looking 6/4 with 888sport to knock out Gabon.
Best of the rest
Here are the other Round of 16 matches, along with the dates and times of, as well as the odds that have been supplied by bet365. All times are stated in GMT:
Nigeria (5/6) v Tunisia (15/4) Sunday, January 23, 7 pm
Guinea (6/5) v Gambia (14/5) Monday, January 24, 4 pm
Senegal (4/9) v Cape Verde (15/2) Tuesday, January 25, 4 pm
Morocco (2/7) v Malawi (12/1) Tuesday, January 25, 7 pm
Mali (1/2) v Equatorial Guinea (13/2) Wednesday, January 26, 7 pm