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Football Manager Competitions: African Zone

Football Manager competitions explained.

FM 2015 competitions guide

Our third episode will be all about Africa as we’re going to explore the continental competitions for the clubs from the only playable nation in Football Manager 2015, South Africa. Of course you can always use the editor to add some extra playable leagues to the continent so this guide might come in handy not only for South Africa, but also for whatever nations you might think of adding into the game.

In case you have missed the first two episodes, you can find them here:

Episode 1 – Europe

Episode 2 – Asia

CAF: Confederation of African Football

cafThe Confederation of African Football is the administrative and controlling body for the African association football. CAF was founded in 1957 and since 2002 it has the administrative center in 6th of October City, near Cairo. It currently consists of 56 associations whose rankings are calculated based on points gathered by African teams throughout their participation in international club tournaments organized by either FIFA or CAF since the establishment of the first African Cup of Champions Clubs back in 1964.

CAF is responsible for running the Africa Cup of Nations and also for the two main club competitions on the continent: the African Champions League and the African Confederation Cup. The CAF Super Cup, which pits the winners of the Champions League against the winners of the Confederation Cup, also came into being in 1992.

African Champions League

caf champions league

The Champions League is open to the winners of all 56 African affiliated national leagues, with the 12 highest ranked associations eligible to enter two teams in the competition. The holders from the previous season can also enter if they have not already qualified for the Champions League. The winner of the tournament gets qualified for the FIFA Club World Cup, a tournament contested between the champion clubs from all six continental confederations, and also faces the winner of the African Confederation Cup in the following season’s CAF Super Cup.

The African Champions League usually begins around January and finishes around November. Therefore at the start of the game in July 2014, the competition is already in the groups phase with the only South African team (Kaizer Chiefs) eliminated in the First Round. Here are the tournament stages:

caf champions league stages

All games are played under a double tie system, including the final. For the knockout stages, the away goal rule is used to determine the winner if scores are level after 90 minutes. If the away goal rule cannot determine the winner, the match goes straight to penalties (no extra time is played).

It is worth knowing that throughout the years particularly dominant have been the two Egyptian giants and arch-rivals from Cairo, Al Ahly and Zamalek. Al Ahly have won the tournament on eight occasions while the ‘White Knights’ (Zamalek) have taken the honours on five occasions.

African Confederation Cup

caf confederation cup

The Confederation Cup is the equivalent to the UEFA Europa League competition. From the top twelve placed CAF member associations, the winner of the domestic cup and the third placed club in the domestic league are eligible to participate in the Confederation Cup, while only domestic cup winners from member associations ranked from 13 till 55 are eligible to participate in the competition.

The winner of the tournament faces the winner of the Champions League in the following season’s Super Cup. The tournament stages are much like the ones from the Champions League, with one extra qualifying round before reaching the groups phase:

caf confederation cup stages

The Confederation Cup is also already underway at the start of the game in July 2014, with SuperSport Utd representing South Africa. For the next season, the winners of the South African FA Cup will earn a qualifying place in the tournament. As for the squad registration, you should know that there are no player restrictions and you can register a maximum of 30 players during the registration windows, and this applies to both continental competitions.

Now before moving on to the Super Cup it’s time to make a comparison between the prize money we get from both competitions:

caf prize money

As you can see the amounts are much better than what Asia has to offer, yet another big difference between the European prize money and these. But here we talk about Africa, and we all know that there are other things more important than football, and that’s where is really worth investing the money. Anyway, succeeding in the Champions League will surely boost your club just enough for you to make a good impression at the FIFA Club World Cup against the European champions, and not only.

CAF Super Cup

caf super cup

The Super Cup is an annual African football competition contested between the winners of the African Champions League and the African Confederation Cup. The Super Cup is played as a single match, with the African Champions League winners playing as hosts. If the score is level at the end of 90 minutes, the penalty shoot-out is used to determine the winner (no extra time is played). There is also a prize money included, which consists of 125.000for the winners.

As we move on with our guide to the Qualification Places screen for Africa we notice a couple of bugs there: the Rank column is missing, and as mentioned before the top 12 placed nations should be able to enter 2 teams in each competition, but in-game there are 14 nations allowed to have 2 teams in the Champions League and one team (instead of 2) in the Confederation Cup. I have raised both issues on the SI forums and they are currently being looked into, hopefully they will be able to fix it.

Either way, at the start of the game in July 2014 South Africa is not among these top nations therefore they can only enter one team for the Champions League and one for the Confederation Cup. As a conclusion, even if there is only one playable nation I still think you should give it a try here. Remember you can always add more playable nations to your game, using the editor to make things more interesting. Thank you all for following and see you next time as we continue our journey to the North American continent.

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