Group A (Bata): Equatorial Guinea, Burkina Faso, Gabon, Congo
Juvenal Edjogo-Owono (Captain, Equatorial Guinea)
Our group is tough because Burkina Faso, Congo and Gabon played very well in the qualifiers. It will be a tough test to go through to the next round. The good thing is that all four teams have a good chance of qualifying to the next round.
We are proud to play the host nation in the opening match of the tournament. It is a big honour and huge exposure for my players. It will be the first time for all of them at the Africa Cup of Nations and I hope they will make us proud. It will be a difficult match since it is important for the host nation (Equatorial Guinea) to have a good start. We are here to learn.
Group B (Ebibeyin): Zambia, Tunisia, Cape Verde, DR Congo
Honour Janza (Head Coach, Zambia)
The draw was fair. There are no easy games. For us, the most important thing is to be here and the next thing is to qualify out of the group phase. African football has moved up and we saw it from the qualifiers. Only the best team will be able to come out of the group.
For Zambia, we are happy to be here and we will fight to be among the top eight and subsequently take it from there. Ultimately, the main objective is to lift the trophy, we have done it before and if we are to get it again, it won’t be a bad idea.
Jose Rui Agua (Head Coach, Cape Verde)
It is good to have Zambia in our group, they are good and strong. This means we have to analyze only two teams instead of three. Like the others, we will try to reach the quarter final. We have the capacity, technical and physical abilities. We just have to be more consistent than the other teams.
Group C (Mongomo): Ghana, Algeria, South Africa, Senegal
Maxwell Konadu (Assistant Coach, Ghana)
We have been waiting anxiously and now the draw is out. Everyone is saying it is the ‘Group of Death’ and I will also say so. South Africa has a young team and are playing well at the moment. You cannot underrate them. Senegal and Algeria are also strong teams. It won’t be easy but we have to make sure we prepare well for the task ahead.
Ephraim ‘Shakes’ Mashaba (Head Coach, South Africa)
We have found ourselves in a tough group. To be in the same group with Senegal, Algeria and Ghana will be tough just like the other groups. There will be no pushovers. Our group is the toughest because it is a combination of different approaches. Algeria are just coming from the World Cup where they did very well. Senegal keeps going forward and though Ghana might be on the building up phase, they will be a difficult team to beat.
For South Africa, we are building a team and are not coming here as a sheep to be slaughtered. We are coming here to compete and not to add to the numbers. People must not take us lightly. We will definitely surprise a lot of people.
Yazid Mansouri (Assistant coach, Algeria)
We have inherited a very difficult group especially with the presence of favourites Ghana. We will have to prepare very well to succeed and have a good tournament. I feel the Algeria versus Ghana match will be decisive for the group.
Group D (Malabo): Cote d’Ivoire, Mali, Cameroon, Guinea
Michel Dussuyer (Head Coach, Guinea)
It a tough group and an exciting challenge. We know we have to play against strong teams. It is a challenge for us and we have to be ambitious. We will do our best to play good football.
Alphonse Tchami (Team Manager, Cameroon)
I think is a good draw because we have Cote d’Ivoire, Mali and Guinea. We met Cote d’Ivoire in the qualifiers and that gives us a little advantage over them. But I don’t think it’s enough. We have to work hard because it is a very tough group. Mali is also a good team and we have to be cautious.