The South African Football Association (SAFA) is ready to submit the bidding documents to host the 2019 CAF Africa Cup of Nations.
SAFA’s Acting CEO, Russell Paul, has confirmed that the documents are ready and they only need to send the press button to the government for approval.
SAFA’s interest to host the tournament follows the original hosts Cameroon being stripped of the hosting rights in October as a result of security concerns and the lack of preparedness.
The deadline for submission is at midnight. The football association is said to have prepared all the necessary documents to bid for the continental tournament. Paul says it is almost certain that South Africa will bid to host the tournament after successful talks with government the past few weeks.
South Africa will be up against Egypt, which officially signalled its willingness to take over from Cameroon as hosts on Thursday night, a day before the deadline. Egypt entered the fray after Morocco, long thought to be interested in standing in for Cameroon, pulled out of contention in a surprise announcement.
South Africa has the infrastructure in place, the country has hosted many tournaments including the 2009 Confederation Cup as well as the 2010 FIFA World Cup.
There are also security concerns in Egypt. Paul says a successful bid will also bring in a much needed cash injection for the association.
CAF will announce the new hosts on the 9th of January.