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Olympic Games draw: South Africa pooled with hosts Japan, Egypt in group of death with Argentina & Spain

12:41 GMT+3 21/04/2021
2020 Olympics flag rings
The group stage draw of the Tokyo games was conducted on Wednesday morning with the African representatives learning their fates

The African teams have learnt their preliminary round opponents for the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games football tournament.

The draw which was conducted on Wednesday morning at Fifa headquarters in, Zurich, was led by Sarai Bareman, Fifa chief women’s football officer and Fifa’s director of tournaments Jaime Yarza.

They were assisted by two legends: Lindsay Tarpley, member of the USA women’s national team and two-time Olympic gold medallist (Athens 2004 and Beijing 2008), and Ryan Nelsen, captain of the New Zealand Olympic squad in 2008 and London 2012.

Reigning African U23 champions Egypt were handed some hard-hitting Group C foes. There, they will slug it out against Barcelona 1992 gold medallists Spain, Australia and 2004 & 2008 winners Argentina.

The Pharaohs begin their campaign for the diadem against Spain on July 22 at the Sapporo Dome, before taking on Australia three days later at the same venue.

The North Africans will wrap up their group phase by trying the South Americans for size at the Saitama Stadium 2002.

Cote d’Ivoire are in what appears to be another tough zone as they will face reigning champions Brazil, Germany and Saudi Arabia in Group D.

The Ivorians will open their bid against Saudi Arabia on July 22 at the International Stadium Yokohama and they play the Selecao three days later at the same venue before playing their last group game against Germany on July 28 in Rifu.

Africa’s third team Tokyo, South Africa, are in Group A with hosts Japan, Mexico and France.

Amaglug-glug start their campaign versus the Asian on July 22 at the Tokyo Stadium, before taking on France (July 25- Saitama) and Mexico (July 28 - Sapporo).

Nigeria remain the only African team to win a gold medal at the men’s football Olympics after the Dream Team silenced Argentina in the final of the 1996 games.

In the women’s event, debutants Zambia will slug it out against China PR, Brazil and the Netherlands in Group F.

Bruce Mwape's Copper Queens will make their bow in the championship against the Netherlands on July 21 at Rifu's Miyagi Stadium.

Three days later, they take on the Asians in Rifu before challenging powerhouse Brazil on July 27 at the Saitama Stadium 2002.