The Africa Cup of Nations (also known as AFCON) is back in Cameroon from Jan 9 to Feb 8, 2023. After an 18-month delay due to the Covid pandemic, the best teams of Africa meet and are bound to offer some exciting encounters. Senegal, Algeria, Cameroon and Egypt emerge as favourites on AFCON betting sites boasting world-class players. Still, the surprise factor is strong, with underdogs like Burkina Faso and Equatorial Guinea reaching late phases of the tournament before.
As a bettor, what should your approach be to bag the highest winnings with the lowest risk? Our AFCON betting tips will guide you through the highest value for daily and outright markets. A complete Group analysis will point the strength and weaknesses of each team, and our listed Africa Cup of Nations Bookmakers return the best odds, selections, and bonuses.
AFCON Betting Tips & Predictions
You can choose between daily or long-term (outright) markets when you place your bets. The Groups have some clear favourites in the 2023 Africa Cup of Nations, so first-place winners have somewhat low odds. However, if you play smart and follow our AFCON betting tips, you can make profitable combos. Let’s see an example in outrights. Cameroon is among the favourites to win, with odds of around 8.00 (7/1). Vincent Aboubakar is in top form, and if his team reaches the end, he could be the top goalscorer. Combining the two gives you odds of 15.00 (14/1), much higher than betting on those individually.
✔️Cameroon ⏩ to win 2023 AFCON & Vincent Aboubakar to be the top goalscorer @15.00 (14/1)
Now, to the Group stage. If you look at the AFCON betting odds, you will realise that each group has a clear frontrunner. That translates to lower prices hence winnings unless you follow a different strategy. You can place an Acca bet with Group winners and get the sum of the individual odds. So, in Group A, Cameroon is the major favourite at 1.25 (1/4). The same applies to Egypt in Group D at 1.72 (8/11) and Algeria in Group E at 1.61 (8/13). The whole sum is a respectable 3.46 (5/2).
✔️ Cameroon, Egypt & Algeria ⏩ to win Groups A, D, & E @ 3.46 (5/2)
Africa Cup of Nations Groups & Schedule
The tournament takes place usually every two years, including 24 teams. They are split into six AFCON groups of four teams each, and the first two qualify to the knock-out phase with the best four third-placed ones. Once the standings are decided, the Round of 16 follows next, with the Quarter-finals, Semi-Finals and Final. For this year’s tournament, the Winner will lift the trophy in the Paul Biya Olembe Stadium located in northern Yaoundé, Cameroon. The breakdown of the Group Stage is:
|Group A||Group B||Group C||Group D||Group E||Group F|
|Cape Verde||Senegal||Gabon||Egypt||Sierra Leone||Mali|
|Burkina Faso||Malawi||Comoros||Sudan||Equatorial Guinea||Mauritania|
|Ethiopia||Zimbabwe||Ghana||Guinea-Bissau||Ivory Coast||The Gambia|
Cameroon: The host country boasts a formidable roster and, together with the home advantage, makes The Indomitable Lions a heavy favourite. Hopefully, Vincent Aboubakar, Andre Onana and Eric Choupo-Moting will carry the team until the end. Toni Conceicao is on his third year on the bench and has enjoyed a string of successes. Having lifted the trophy five times in the past, Cameroon wants to live up to the nation’s history and lift the trophy for the sixth time at home.
Cape Verde: Once a weak team with sporadic wins, Cape Verde has become almost regular to the Africa Cup of Nations. The bar is set higher on the country’s third appearance, and a knockout place is expected. If Ryan Mendes shows his skill and leads the very competent offensive line, the team could be the surprise of the tournament.
Burkina Faso: The third-place finisher in 2017, has been on an undefeated run in official fixtures since November 2018 and hopes to keep it up. Even though the star Lassina Traoré is out due to an injury, Bertrand Traoré has the quality to help Burkina Faso go past the group stage. The manager, Kamou Malo, has a defensive-first approach which paid off with only six goals conceded in the last 12 matches.
Ethiopia: If you are old enough, you might recall the glories of the past, but in the last couple of decades, Ethiopia has fallen short of any success. With plenty of luck, it qualified to the 2022 AFCON since Madagascar drew to the weak Niger in the last matchday. Shimelis Bekele is one of the very few footballers playing abroad and commands the midfield.
✔️Group A ⏩ Cameroon to finish first @1.50 (1/2)
Senegal: The top favourite of the tournament, has some of the best African footballers representing it. Sadio Mane, Kalidou Koulibaly and Edouard Mendy have crucial roles in major European clubs like Liverpool, Napoli and Chelsea. After a dominant preliminary round, the Lions of Teranga eye the big trophy and nothing else. Under the experienced guidance of Aliou Cissé, Senegal aims to win the silverware for the first time and has all the quality to back it up.
Zimbabwe: For the third consecutive AFCON, Zimbabwe enters the stage, hoping to avoid an early exit. However, that will be tough as the poor World Cup qualifiers performance showed. Moreover, the squad is hampered by injuries that have knocked out important players like Marvelous Nakamba and Tendayi Darikwa. The domestic political situation has also affected the team, with FIFA threatening sanctions. Tino Kadewere on the frontline will try to make the most of his chances.
Guinea: The country hit the frontpages recently for reasons irrelevant to football, but the internal turmoil might affect the squad. After a difficult qualification to the group stage, Guinea struggled to score a win for the World Cup qualifiers. Florentin Pogba and Antoine Conte are injured so that the defensive line could face issues. Liverpool’s Naby Keïta will orchestrate the midfield and try to create the plays that will give Guinea some much-needed victories.
Malawi: The underdog, according to AFCON betting sites, seems to have the weakest roster, at least on paper. Most footballers play in the local Super League; hence the overall quality is low. The last six performances also did not impress with one victory and five losses. The player that stands out is Gabadinho Mhango, who plays for Orlando Pirates but seems unlikely to pull the rest out of mediocrity.
✔️Group B ⏩ Senegal to finish first @1.20 (1/5)
Morocco: The Atlas Lions have a rich football history being the only African team reaching 10th place in FIFA rankings in 1998. Still, they won the trophy only once back in 1976. This year, it qualified undefeated with the experienced manager Vahid Halilhodžić behind the wheel. The star players Hakim Ziyech and Noussair Mazraoui were not called up due to a fall out with the manager. That could make the effort more difficult, but Youssef En-Nesyri and Achraf Hakimi are high-calibre footballers.
Ghana: After reaching the knockout stages in the 2010 World Cup, Ghana experienced a decline. Since the manager of that team, Milovan Rajevac, returned, the spirits are again high, reflecting in the AFCON betting odds. André Ayew scored some vital goals in the qualifiers and hopes to repeat that feat. The Black Stars can go far if Thomas Partey and Daniel Amartey are also up to par.
Gabon: Looking for the breakthrough for quite some time, Gabon is no stranger to AFCON. It hopes to reach the knockout phase in the seventh appearance, but this will not be easy. Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang is the undisputed leader of the squad, bringing some Premier League stardust. In the World Cup qualifiers, Gabon failed to secure a qualifying spot.
Comoros: The archipelago in the Indian Ocean grabbed a group spot after an impressive preliminary run. Players have been riled up for the landmark challenge, but opponents will not see Comoros as inferiors this time. Africa Cup of Nations betting sites consider it the most likely team to finish last in the group.
✔️Group C ⏩ Morocco to finish first @1.82 (9/11)
Egypt: A traditional powerhouse of African football, only aims at finishing first thanks to a mighty roster and a well-known manager. The qualifying round was a walk in the park for the Pharaohs, and they are heavily tipped for finishing first in Group D. The biggest weapon will be Mo Salah, who has been in phenomenal form this season. Liverpool’s striker has scored 23 goals in 26 matches and hopes to get some assists from Mohamed El Neny and Trézéguet. Carlos Queiroz experience can also be crucial in crunch time.
Nigeria: The three-time winner of AFCON has been putting some solid displays in the tournament. Things can be a little different this year, as internal issues have set back the squad. The former manager, Gernot Rohr, was sacked after five years, and the next one will take over after the competition. That means that Nigeria will go into the tournament with a caretaker manager. Several players like Victor Osimhen and Alex Iwobi are out, leaving Kelechi Iheanacho in charge of scoring.
Sudan: It’s been a while since Sudan made it past the group stage. Even qualifying to the AFCON was a significant success. The political instability affected football, which reflects in the AFCON betting odds tipping it to finish last. All players (but one) compete in the Sudan Premier League, making it hard to single out one particular to make a difference. Mohamed Abdelrahman could be the guy who strives to pull Sudan from the last place.
Guinea-Bissau: The national team of Guinea-Bissau has a relatively short history. The first competition it entered was the FIFA World Cup qualification in 1998. Since then, it has qualified three times in the Africa Cup of Nations, including this year. Aiming to finish as one of the four best-placed third teams, has many footballers playing in French and Portuguese clubs. Moreto Cassamá, a regular at Reims, is the brain in Guinea-Bissau and the man to watch.
✔️Group D ⏩ Egypt to finish first @1.78 (7/9)
Algeria: The reigning champion seems ready to defend the crown by having probably the best lineup in the country’s history. The preliminary round worked only as a warm-up, and Algeria ranks as the second favourite in the Africa Cup of Nations Bookmakers to lift the trophy. Led by Man City’s winger Riyad Mahrez, the starting 11 also include several prominent players like Ismaël Bennacer, Yacine Brahimi and Aïssa Mandi.
Ivory Coast: Another team that strives to reclaim the past glories is a two-times winner and, some world-class players, wore the jersey. In 2023, Ivory Coast got the AFCON ticket easily; however, the squad seems to lack what it takes to go to the end. Franck Kessié and Eric Bailly are the trademark names, but the goalkeeping and centre back positions might be the Achilles heel in The Elephants’ efforts.
Sierra Leone: A surprising undefeated run in the qualifiers allowed Sierra Leone to go through the group stage of the AFCON for the third time. The roster includes motley players playing for the Sierra Leone National Premier League or lower divisions in Europe. Among them, we singled out Steven Caulker with EPL experience. It will be tough to avoid last place in the group.
Equatorial Guinea: Rising from relative obscurity, Equatorial Guinea finished fourth in the 2015 tournament but failed to build momentum. Missing the next two competitions goes into this year’s tournament in good form, as the World Cup qualifiers showed. Most players play abroad (mainly in Europe), and Emilio Nsue has the most notable career. Based on AFCON betting odds has a good chance of finishing third.
✔️Group E ⏩ Algeria to finish first @1.50 (11/18)
Tunisia: It is almost twenty years since Tunisia won the sole AFCON in 2004. Since then, it has contested multiple times for the trophy but only reached the semi-finals. Africa Cup of Nations Bookmakers consider it a dark horse for winning the title but a frontrunner to win the group. Wahbi Khazri and Ellyes Skhiri are the most well-known players as they have been parts of European teams for multiple years.
Mali: One of the hottest prospects in the 2023 tournament is Mali. Coming from excellent performances in the World Cup qualifiers and a youthful squad could cause serious upsets. Moussa Djenepo, Kalifa Coulibaly and Hamari Traoré will pave the way for advancing as far as possible in the knockout phase. The manager, Mohamed Magassouba, has been at the helm for five years and has the trust of the footballers.
Gabia: In the debut in a major competition, it has a long shot for something good, but it will be a formidable opponent. The only shortfall was that due to covid infections, it had to cancel all the friendly games before the AFCON. Still, Musa Barrow, Sulayman Marreh and Yusupha Njie, all with strong European careers, will challenge for one of the four best third-placed teams.
Mauritania: One of the biggest underdogs on Africa Cup of Nations betting sites, participates in the competition for the second time. While it qualified comfortably, it failed in the World Cup qualifiers, resulting in a managerial change. Aboubakar Kamara and Adama Ba come from overseas to assist Mauritania to avoid last place, albeit that will be hard.
✔️Group F ⏩ Mali to finish first @2.62 (13/8)
How to bet on AFCON 2023
Now that you have the complete picture of the groups and teams in the 2023 AFCON, let’s see how you can maximise your profits. The most important factor is obviously, finding the highest odds. We only list bookmakers excelling in prices so, you can pick from our suggestions. Next, ensure that you have the latest info on a team’s lineup. For example, Gabon’s captain Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang was tested positive on Covid once he landed in Cameroon, and he will miss two of the three group games.
We have also seen that real gems hide in special bets. That means looking beyond 1X2 and Total Goals and looking for opportunities in Handicaps, BTTS, Player Specials and more. And if you prefer Live markets, your AFCON betting site should have a quality in-play product. Many selections and features like Cashout and Live Streaming are among the benefits you can find in our recommended bookies.
Key players to watch on Africa Cup of Nations
When it comes down to deciding for your next bet, the overall quality of the lineup is what matters the most. Still, some footballers of world-class level are part of AFCON teams. Since they can settle the result due to the abilities they possess, it is a good idea to take a closer look at them.
Mohamed Salah: The Egyptian striker is probably in the best shape of his career and scores non-stop with Liverpool. He is the main reason the Pharaohs are among the favourites to win the competition. If they do reach the end, he could be the top goalscorer, as he will be the target of his teammates.
Riyad Mahrez: Being a regular at Manchester City is never easy, considering the quality of the squad. Mahrez can play in both wings and also score. He led Algeria as captain in winning the 2019 tournament and has all the traits to do that again.
Vincent Aboubakar: The top scorer of Cameroon in the preliminary round and the World Cup qualifiers, can lead the Indomitable Lions to another glory. He has been in top form with Al-Nassr, and he could be a regular even in a good European club (which he was in the past).
Sadio Mane: The highlight of a very talented Senegalese team will be undoubtedly the Liverpool forward. Mane is known for scoring goals and creating for his teammates and is a constant danger for the opponent’s defence. If he meets his usual standards, Senegal has a great chance of winning the trophy.
Historical Stats of Africa Cup of Nations
The competition’s history goes back to 1957, where the CAF held it for the first time in Sudan. Egypt and Ethiopia met in the final with a 4-0 victory for the Pharaohs. From that point on, it goes in a biannual fashion.
Egypt is the most dominant nation in the AFCON, with seven trophies. Cameroon follows next with five and Ghana with four. Nigeria has three, with Algeria and DR Congo celebrated twice. The last tournament in 2019 was won by Algeria, which defeated Senegal 1-0.
Where to bet on 2023 AFCON
If you look for Africa Cup of Nations Bookmakers with high odds, various markets and great bonuses, you are in the right place. We shortlist only the best bookies that have undergone our meticulous evaluation process. Moreover, we highly consider players’ feedback in our ratings.
Your best guess would be to check the list we show above, as it includes only the cream of the crop in AFCON betting sites. To make it quick, though, bet365, Unibet and 22bet are stapled choices with several thousand long-term members.
Traditional markets like 1X2 and Over/Under are always good choices, but going deeper can be a wise move. Handicaps, Card & Corner bets and Player Props gain more and more popularity because of the high payout they can provide.
Sure you can, as outrights are some of the most popular bets in such tournaments. Title Winner, Top Goalscorer and Group stage winner, are the most sought after choices that can return high profits.
Senegal ranks first in AFCON betting odds, followed by title owner Algeria and Nigeria. If you look for a dark horse, Mali can be a good choice. Mo Salah’s quality has also helped Egypt be considered among the frontrunners.
Vincent Aboubakar is the frontline candidate for the Golden Boot as he scores non-stop this season. Liverpool’s Sadio Mane and Mo Salah follow closely, as they also come from great seasons in highly competitive leagues.