Caf Super League set for 2023, Motsepe confirms return to two-legged finals

Patrice Motsepe, February 2021Backpagepix

Confederation of African Football (Caf) is set to hold the inaugural edition of the annual Super League in August 2023 which will have up to $100 million in prize money.

Caf president Patrice Motsepe revealed this on Sunday following an Executive Committee meeting in Morocco where a number of issues were discussed, including reverting to a two-legged Champions League and Confederation Cup final.

The Super League was mooted by Fifa president Gianni Infantino when he visited the Democratic Republic of Congo for the 80th anniversary celebrations for Lubumbashi-based giants TP Mazembe in November 2019.

While the format of the Super League is yet to be disclosed and how participants will be selected, Caf revealed that participating sides will need to have an academy and a women’s team.

The Super League is seen as a potential cash cow for Caf especially with the pull of the continent’s top clubs such as Egyptian giants Al Ahly and Zamalek, Morocco’s Wydad and Raja Casablanca, Esperance of Tunisia, TP Mazembe and South Africa’s Mamelodi Sundowns, Kaizer Chiefs and Orlando Pirates.

Caf feels it can generate in excess of $200 million in sponsorship with half of it channeled to the tournament while the rest goes towards infrastructural development and promotion of African football.

Meanwhile, Motsepe exonerated himself from blame following the controversy generated from Morocco hosting this year’s Champions League final where home team Wydad beat Al Ahly 2-0 in a game the Egyptian giants had threatened to boycott due to the choice of venue.

“This will never happen again. It’s something I inherited, it’s something I could not change, the decision was taken before me. We will have a two-legged final again,” said Motsepe, while confirming a return to the two-legged Champions League and Confederation Cup final format.

Motsepe was following up on his sentiments last week when he defended the decision to play the final at the Mohamed V Stadium in Casablanca, saying only Morocco and Senegal had submitted state-backed bids to host the final.

“Caf took a decision in 2018, that they’re going to have a one-legged final and I couldn’t change that decision. And then you have countries that have to compete, South Africa did compete but you can’t compete without government support,” Motsepe told South African National Editors Forum.

“So, Safa puts a letter, but there’s no government support. So, at the end of the day, only two countries, Morocco and Senegal complied with the conditions. I privately recognised that you can’t be president of an organisation and not comply with the rules and regulations and the agreements.”

“But let me tell you the consent from Al Ahly that they will be disadvantaged, it’s a legitimate and a fair concern. But the only problem I had was, I cannot be a president that disregards and ignores rules and regulations and decisions that were taken.”

Caf Super League

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