The unusual fashion of qualifying for the 2013 African Cup of Nations is finished and the field of 16 teams is set for South Africa.
While most of the soccer/football world only saw the rioting of the Senegalese fans who forced the abandonment of the second leg of the Ivory Coast Senegal clash which was standing at 2-0 by way of a brace from Didier Drogba and the Senegal fans started trying to break through and attack the visiting fans from the Ivory Coast.
While some historians can claim the old argument of the rivalries of the numerous tribes but this will most likely have reprimands coming to Senegal and its their fans who are to blame.
In more interesting action for those in America the only player from Major League Soccer, Kei Kamara, was representing Sierra Leone as they were looking to qualify for their first major tournament played at Tunisia to a 0-0 draw which allowed the Eagles of Carthage to progress on aggregate 2-2 via away goals.
Angola was able to count on a brace from Machucho to win 2-0 over Zimbabwe and win on aggregate 3-3 on away goals.
Most recent champions Zambia conceeded to Uganda to equalize on aggregate 1-1 which lead to a legendary penalty shootout winning 9-8 via Stoppila Sunzu making good on his spot kick to save the reigning champions from total embarrassment.
After many years of not qualifying Ethiopia shocked the up and coming Sudan side winning the second leg 2-0 and providing the most necessary as they progressed 5-5 on aggregate.
Of all the exciting results was the failure of Cameroon to progress to the tournament as tiny Cape Verde won on aggregate 3-2 despite losing the second leg 2-1. A highlight was the debue and goal by 16 year old Malaga player Fabrice Olinga. A player who will have many larger clubs around the world monitoring his development over the coming years.
Other results were Mali winning 7-1 on aggregate over Botswanna, Ghana defeated Malawi 3-0, Nigeria routed liberia 8-3, Morocco brushed past Mozambique 4-2, Niger surpassed Guinea 2-1, Algeria conquered Libya 3-0, Congo progressed 5-2 over Equitorial Guinea, Togo beat Gabon 3-2 thanks to Adebayor’s winner, and Burkina Faso outscored the Central African Republic 3-2.
Excitement in January will be on how the unexpected qualified nation will make out in the summer season of South Africa.
No doubt the 2013 African Cup of Nations will bring out the excitement that came from the 2012 version.