Crunching numbers behind 2023 Africa Cup of Nations' final four


FOOTBALL Crunching numbers behind 2023 Africa Cup of Nations' final four

Festus Chuma 15:30 - 04.02.2024

Clashes of football titans with intriguing stats and historical narratives sets the stage for Epic Battles in AFCON 2023 semifinals

As the 2023 Africa Cup of Nations in Cote d'Ivoire reaches its penultimate stage, the tournament unveils a spectacular semifinal lineup featuring Nigeria, DR Congo, Cote d'Ivoire, and South Africa.

These four teams are set to battle for supremacy in the 34th edition of Africa's premier football event. 

Each team brings a rich history and an impressive set of statistics that underline their journey to this critical stage. 

From Nigeria's seasoned expertise to South Africa's triumphant return, these semifinals are not just a display of skill but a celebration of football statistics that have shaped their paths.


The Super Eagles stand tall as the most experienced team in this stage. This semifinal marks their 16th appearance which is testament to their consistent performance in the African football scene. 

With a focus on their attacking prowess Nigeria has demonstrated resilience notably withstanding challenges such as a tough draw against Equatorial Guinea. 

Their defensive fortitude is equally commendable, having conceded only a single goal throughout the tournament. 

A key stat to remember is that under José Peseiro's leadership, Nigeria is the only team to have reached the semifinal without playing extra time - a clear indicator of their efficient gameplay.

DR Congo

The Leopards have carved their path into history by securing their first victory in this edition of the Cup of Nations. Their quarterfinal triumph over Guinea, with a 3-1 scorelin was a display of sheer strength and determination. 

This victory marks their fifth appearance in the semifinals reflecting a significant resurgence in their football prowess. 

Historically, DR Congo has twice lifted the CAN trophy (1968 and 1974), both times eliminating the host nation in the semifinals - a stat that might play a psychological advantage in their current campaign.

Côte d'Ivoire

Côte d'Ivoire's journey to the semifinals has been nothing short of dramatic.

 Recovering from a heavy defeat to Equatorial Guinea, they bounced back spectacularly, eliminating reigning champions Senegal and securing a nail-biting victory against Mali. 

This is their ninth time in the semifinals, a record that speaks volumes of their resilience and tactical acumen. 

A notable statistic for the Elephants is their first extra-time victory in a Cup of Nations match since the 1992 quarterfinals which they eventually won.

South Africa

Bafana Bafana's return to the AFCON semifinals after 24 years is a story of remarkable resurgence and tactical brilliance. 

They have impressed fans and critics alike by eliminating strong teams like Morocco and Cape Verde, showcasing a renewed vigor in their gameplay. 

Their last appearance in the semifinals in 2000 ended in a loss to Nigeria, a stat that they are undoubtedly keen to overturn in their current campaign.

  Follow Pulse Sports Kenya WhatsApp Channel for more news.