Which teams have qualified for AFCON 2023 knockout rounds? List of nations in Round of 16 as Ghana await fate

The 2023 Africa Cup of Nations has entered the critical phase of Matchday Three of the group stage, where the fates of all 24 competing nations will be decided.

Ivory Coast are facing an anxious wait to see if they will contest the knockout phase, the host nation having been thrashed 4-0 by Equatorial Guinea to leave them in third place in the Group A standings.

Continental heavyweights including Ghana and Cameroon could also find themselves heading home early, while Egypt scraped through by the skin of their teeth as the injured Mohamed Salah watched on.

With the final spots in the Round of 16 to be determined over the coming days, The Sporting News has an updated list on which teams have gone through, and which have already been eliminated.

Which teams have qualified for AFCON 2023 knockout rounds?

The following teams have qualified for the knockout phase of the 2023 Africa Cup of Nations.

Team Group
Equatorial Guinea A (1st place)
Nigeria A (2nd place)
Cape Verde B (1st place)
Egypt B (2nd place)
Senegal  C (1st place)
Cameroon C (2nd place)
Guinea C (3rd place
Angola D (1st place)
Burkina Faso D (2nd place)
Mauritania D (3rd place)

MORE: How the groups look at the 2023 Africa Cup of Nations

Teams eliminated from AFCON 2023

Given that four of the best third-placed teams will progress to the Round of 16, many nations are yet to learn their fate when it comes to going through from the group phase.

The following teams know they are now out of the Africa Cup of Nations 2023.

Team Group
Guinea-Bissau A (4th place, 0 points)
Ghana B (3rd place, 2 points)
Mozambique B (4th place, 2 points)
Gambia C (4th place, 0 points)
Algeria D (4th place, 2 points)

AFCON 2023 format and rules

There are 24 teams competing in this iteration of the Africa Cup of Nations, split into six groups of four.

With the knockout stages starting with a Round of 16 — and being one-off straight knockout ties — it means that, as well as the top two from each group, four of the best third-placed teams in the groups will also get a knockout spot.

In the event that two teams are locked on the same points, their placing will be determined on:

  1. Points in the head-to-head match between the two tied teams
  2. Goal difference in the group
  3. Goals scored overall in the group
  4. Drawing of lots.

In the knockout stages, games will go to 30 minutes of extra time and then penalties if the teams cannot be separated. There will also be a third-place playoff between the two losing semifinalists to determine who gets the bronze medal.

AFCON knockout stage schedule and fixtures

Round of 16 fixtures

Date Time (ET) Match
January 27 12 p.m. Angola vs. TBD
January 27 3 p.m. Nigeria vs. Cameroon
January 28 12 p.m. Equatorial Guinea vs. Guinea
January 28 3 p.m. Egypt vs. TBD
January 29 12 p.m. Cape Verde vs. Mauritania
January 29 3 p.m. Senegal vs. TBD
January 30 12 p.m. TBD vs. Burkina Faso
January 30 3 p.m. TBD vs. TBD


Date Match
February 2 Round of 16 winner 1 vs. Round of 16 winner 1
February 2 Round of 16 winner 3 vs. Round of 16 winner 4
February 3 Round of 16 winner 5 vs. Round of 16 winner 6
February 3 Round of 16 winner 7 vs. Round of 16 winner 8

Semifinals and third-place playoff

The semifinals will take both place on February 7.

The third-place playoff, between the two losing semifinalists, will be held on February 10.


The tournament concludes with the final in Abidjan on February 11.


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