Wednesday, 10 August 2022 17:02

CAF launches $100m Super League

The Confederation of African Football (CAF) has launched the much-touted Africa Super League with prize money of $100 million for participating teams.

The continental football governing body inaugurated the new African inter-club competition at a meeting in Arusha, Tanzania, on Wednesday.

The project has been in the works since it was mooted by Gianni Infantino, FIFA president, in 2020.

CAF announced that the African Super League will be operated on a budget of $200 million and will kick off in August 2023.

 

Half of the budget will be split between the 24 participating clubs, with each team guaranteed a minimum of $2.5 million and the winner gets $11.6 million.

The money is over five times the $2.5 million awarded to the winners of the CAF Champions League.

CAF added that each of its 54 member associations would receive $1 million annually, while $50 million would be set aside for women’s football and youth development.

 

FORMAT OF THE AFRICA SUPER LEAGUE

According to CAF, the Super League will be played by 24 teams from three regions (North Africa, West/Central Africa, South/East Africa) and 16 different countries.

A total of 197 matches will be played between August and May, with the finalists playing a maximum of 21 games. The league will include both promotion and relegation playoffs.

The final will be a one-legged tie at a neutral ground later in the season.

 

CAF is yet to provide more details on the formatting of the league.

 

 

The African Super League has generated mixed reactions since it was raised in 2020. While a few people believe it is a potential driver of the development of football in Africa, others have kicked against it.

The South African Football Players Union (SAFPU) described the plan as a “wreckage” that African football may not recover from.

 

“Professional football in South Africa and Africa could be at risk if the resolution to commence with the Super League is implemented and there may be no return from the wreckage that a Super League can become,” the union said in a statement.

Other African football stakeholders have dismissed the competition as “aping of the botched European Super League.”

WHAT DOES IT MEAN FOR AFRICAN FOOTBALL

The African Super League is expected to run concurrently with the CAF Champions League from 2023 but its effect on other competitions like the Confederations Cup and domestic leagues cannot be ascertained yet.

Explaining the impact of the financial investment that the Super League is expected to attract, Patrice Motsepe, CAF president, said the gains of the competition will be spread into the development of other African inter-club competitions.

“A significant amount of the money from the CAF Super League will be invested back into African football and part of the process involves giving $1 million every year to every one of CAF’s 54 Member Associations as a contribution to football and youth development. We also want to look to increase the prize money for the men’s and women’s CAF Champions Leagues,” he had said.

Although, Mosepe added that “we have been inundated with investors and sponsors, who are anxious to partner with us on the Super League,” CAF has not announced the sponsors or ways it will achieve its stated budget of $200 million.

[TheCable]

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