AFCON 2024: Who are the 24 coaches?

AFCON 2024, which will take place from 13 January to 11 February 2024 in Ivory Coast, will see the participation of 24 teams.

Let's take a look at the 24 coaches who will try to lead their respective teams to victory.

This year's competition is officially named AFCON 2023 since it was initially scheduled to take place last year but was postponed until January-February 2024.

Group A

Jean-Louis Gasset (French, 70 years old), coach of Ivory Coast

Before taking the job in 2022, Jean-Loius Gasset had no experience in the African continent. After spending nine years as Laurent Blanc's assistant, Gasset earned head coaching gigs with Ligue 1 sides Montpellier, Saint-Étienne and Bordeaux.

To be fair, Ivory Coast are the hosts, so the 70-year-old didn't have to guide his team through the qualifying rounds of this tournament. However, it's important to note that Gasset led the Elephants to their biggest win since 1961 (9-0 victory over Seychelles), and their second-biggest win in history. It remains to be seen if the French coach can steer the hosts to their third AFCON title.

Jean-Louis Gasset, AFCON 2024
Credit: Icon Sport

Juan Micha (Equatoguinean, 48 years old), coach of Equatorial Guinea

After coaching Equatorial Guinea‘s U-17 and U-20 teams, Juan Micha was promoted to take over the national team. Under his wing, Nzalang Nacional experienced their second unprecedented consecutive participation in the AFCON after two consecutive absences. This year, he will try to do better than the previous edition's quarter-final exit.

Juan Micha, AFCON 2024
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Baciro Candé (Bissau-Guinean, 56 years old), coach of Guinea-Bissau

Appointed in 2017 after a first experience in Portugal (AD Oeiras), Baciro Candé is a legend in his country, and for good reason. The native of Catio is the only one to have qualified the Djurtus for the Nations Cup, four times consecutively at that. This time, the objective remains the same, namely to break the glass ceiling, by qualifying Guinea-Bissau for the knockout phase.

Baciro Candé, AFCON 2024
Credit: Icon Sport

José Peseiro (Portuguese, 63 years old), Nigeria coach

The Portuguese coach was appointed in 2022, thanks to his long CV reflecting a previous successful stint in Africa, notably at Al Ahly with whom he won the Egyptian championship after a one-season adventure (2015-2016).

The Super Eagles had a spectacular AFCON 2024 qualifying campaign, winning five of their six group matches. Peseiro has the task of leading Nigeria‘s national team to their fourth Nations title.

Jose Peseiro, AFCON 2024
Credit: Icon Sport

Group B

Bubista (Cape Verdean, 53 years old), coach of Cape Verde

Bubista was entrusted with Cape Verde‘s national team in 2020, after managing a few local teams. He had also been one of the team's assistant coaches twice (2007-2013 and 2016-2017).

He is the first coach in the history of the Blue Sharks to take part in a second consecutive AFCON tournament. And this, with the ambition of reaching the round of 16 where he left off in 2022 (AFCON 2021).

Bubista, AFCON 2024
Credit: Icon Sport

Rui Vitória (Portuguese, 53 years old), Egypt coach

Arriving in 2022 a few months after another Portuguese, Carlos Queiroz (2021-2022), sacked for lack of results and non-qualification for the 2022 World Cup, Vitoria managed to raise the bar with the Pharaohs of Egypt, by flying through the qualifying phase (five victories in as many matches).

Still undefeated in competitive fixtures with the seven-time African champions, the former Benfica coach's only loss came in a friendly. He is one of the coaches to keep an eye out for, knowing the reputation as a winner that precedes him. His eight titles won, including six in Portugal, make him the most successful coach in this edition of the AFCON.

Rui Vitoria, AFCON 2023
Credit: Icon Sport

Chris Hughton (Irish, 65 years old), Ghana coach

Former technical assistant to Otto Addo, Chris Hughton took over from the former Ghanaian international (15 caps, 2 goals) at the helm of the Black Stars of Ghana in March 2023. With a more than average record of 4 wins, 2 draws and 3 defeats, the former Newcastle coach is struggling to achieve the expectations placed on him.

Beyond the results, his team is criticized for the rather poor gameplay. Raoul Savoy, his counterpart from the Central African Republic, also predicted an exit from the group stage, as in the previous edition, following their qualification by a mouse hole.

Chris Hughton, AFCON 2023
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Chiquinho Conde (Mozambican, 58 years old), Mozambique coach

The former Créteil player took charge of the Mambas of Mozambique in 2021, after a first brief stint (six months) in 2010 marking a parenthesis in his journey within the domestic championship. Despite a negative record of 10 defeats, six victories and four draws in 20 matches, he achieved the feat of qualifying the team for their first AFCON event in 14 years (their last participation dates back to 2010).

Chiquinho Conde, AFCON 2023
Credit: Icon Sport

Group C

Rigobert Song, (Cameroonian, 47 years old), coach of Cameroon

The emblematic former defender of the Indomitable Lions (137 caps, four goals) was hired in 2022 by Samuel Eto'o, his former teammate, who is the president of the Cameroonian Football Federation (Fécafoot).

Song had previously managed the team on an interim basis between 2017 and 2018, while he was serving a second term as an assistant. The 47-year-old won two of his country's five AFCON titles, and was the best player of the tournament in 2002.

Interestingly, Song also qualified the Indomitable Lions of Cameroon for the 2022 World Cup at the expense of Algeria, where they defeated Brazil in the group stages.

Rigobert Song, AFCON 2023
Credit: Icon Sport

Tom Saintfiet (Belgian, 50 years old), Gambia coach

Arriving in 2018, Saintfiet is one of the most experienced coaches of this edition. He has managed 10 national teams, and six of those were in Africa. The Belgian was also technical director of the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) between March to July 2012.

This says a lot about his knowledge of continental football. After qualifying the Scorpions to their first AFCON event in 2022, this time he intends to reach the last four. To do this, Gambia will have to get out of the group of death in which they'll meet the title holder, Senegal, the last bronze medalist, Cameroon, and Guinea.

Tom Saintfiet, AFCON 2023
Credit: Icon Sport

Kaba Diawara (Franco-Guinean, 48 years old), Guinea coach

Having been entrusted with the national team for his coaching debut in 2021, the former Syli National of Guinea striker (28 caps, 10 goals) is perhaps the least experienced coach on the board. With a negative record of eight wins, four draws and nine defeats, his best performance remains a round of 16 berth at AFCON 2021.

Kaba Diawara, AFCON 2023
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Aliou Cissé (Senegalese, 47 years old), coach of Senegal

The former Lions midfielder (33 caps) was propelled to the head of Senegal‘s national team in 2015. Before that, he had proven himself as an assistant to Amara Traoré (January-February 2012), Joseph Koto (May-October 2012) and Alain Giresse (2013-2015), and as a caretaker coach between February and April 2012.

In short, a career practically in Senegalese style after starting out as an assistant at Louhans-Cuiseaux in France. The ex-Parisian can be proud of a very positive record (more than 63% of victories). After getting tripped up in 2017 (quarter-finals) and 2019 (final), he finally led the team to their first title.

Aliou Cisse, AFCON 2023
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Group D

Djamel Belmadi (Franco-Algerian, 47 years old), Algeria coach

Belmadi was parachuted into charge of the Fennecs in 2018, after eight years spent in Qatar. He managed the Qatari national team, (2014-2015) with two stints in charge of Lekhwiya SC (2010-2012, 2015-2018).

The former PSG and Manchester City player immediately won the hearts of fans across the country by winning the 2019 AFCON, and establishing an unbeaten record of 35 matches in the process.

Algeria went through a rough patch, with elimination in the group stage at AFCON 2021 and non-qualification for the 2022 World Cup. But since then, Belmadi's team seems to have risen from its ashes, since they come into this tournament on the back of a 12-match unbeaten run.

Djamel Belmadi, AFCON 2023
Credit: Icon Sport

Pedro Soares Gonçalves (Portuguese, 47 years old), coach of Angola

Appointed in August 2019, Pedro Gonçalves had never coached a professional team, except the youth categories of Portuguese clubs, the youth teams of Angola (U20 and U17) and the hopefuls of Clube Desportivo Primeiro de Agosto in Angola.

He initially failed to qualify the Palancas Negras for AFCON 2021, before redeeming himself by guiding them to this year's edition of the Nations Cup.

Pedro Soares Goncalves, AFCON 2023
Credit: Icon Sport

Hubert Velud (French, 64 years old), coach of Burkina Faso

In charge of Burkina Faso since April 2022, Velud knows African football well, having coached several clubs on the continent, as well as the national teams of Togo and Sudan. He built his track record at TP Mazembe with a CAF Super Cup (2016) and in Algeria with two championships, at ES Sétif (2013) then at USM Alger (2014).

Despite a positive record, he will be judged on his performances during this competition. Velud will have to do better than his Burkinabè predecessor Kamou Malo who finished fourth with the Stallions during the previous edition.

Hubert Velud, AFCON 2023
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Amir Abdou (Franco-Comorian, 51 years old), coach of Mauritania

Appointed in March 2022 with a stint in France (FC Golfech) and a historic career with the Comoros on his CV, the former coach of FC Nouadhibou has the mission of qualifying the Mourabitounes for the knockout phase for the first time in history. In two previous appearances (2019, 2021), Mauritania have never managed to get out of the group stage. Perhaps the third time's the charm.

Amir Abdou, AFCON 2023
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Group E

Éric Chelle, (Franco-Malian, 46 years old), coach of Mali

Appointed in May 2022, the short-lived former Eagles defender (5 caps) had made his mark in the lower divisions in France before taking the reins of the national team. With a winning rate of more than 70%, he will have to do better than the previous two editions, where Mali crashed out in the round of 16.

Eric Chelle, AFCON 2023
Credit: Icon Sport

Collin Benjamin (Namibian, 45 years old), coach of Namibia

The youngest coach of AFCON 2024, Collin Benjamin was a youth coach at TSV 1860 Munich in his early days. He joined the staff of the Brave Warriors as an assistant in 2018 before taking charge five years later (July 2022). Under his leadership, Namibia returned to the Nations Cup after missing the previous edition.

Collin Benjamin, AFCON 2023
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Hugo Broos (Belgian, 71 years old), coach of South Africa

The oldest coach, he has been in office since May 2021. Broos is one of the few managers to have already lifted the trophy (in 2017 with Cameroon). Having started his long career in Belgium in 1988, with three championships and two cups under his belt, the Belgian coach exported his services to Africa, more precisely to Algeria.

His experience allowed South Africa‘s Bafana Bafana to return to the final phase after missing the previous edition.

Hugo Broos, AFCON 2023
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Jalel Kadri (Tunisian, 52 years old), coach of Tunisia

Jalel Kadri was promoted to head coach in February 2022 following the departure of Mondher Kebaier, of whom he had been deputy for a year. He had previously been the team's assistant coach for seven months (February-September 2013) under Nabil Maaloul.

Kadri knows Tunisian football, as he coached a few local sides in the past. He will try to do better than his predecessor who stopped in the quarter-finals during the previous edition.

Jalel Kadri, AFCON 2023
Credit: Icon Sport

Group F

Sébastien Desabre (French, 47 years old), DR Congo coach

After spending two years with Chamois Niortais, Sebastien Desabre landed the DR Congo job in August 2023. He has a lot of experience working in Africa, having managed the Ugandan national team, as well as clubs like Esperance, ASEC Mimosas, Ismaily and Wydad Casablanca. Desabre guided DR Congo to AFCON 2024, after they failed to qualify for the previous edition.

Sebastien Desabre, AFCON 2023
Credit: Icon Sport

Walid Regragui (Franco-Moroccan, 48 years old), Morocco coach

In office since 2022, following the departure of Vahid Halilhodzic, just a few months before the World Cup. The former Moroccan international (44 caps, 1 goal) had just won the Botola Pro/CAF Champions League double with Wydad.

Voted best African coach in 2022, the former Toulouse player has a string of victories and achievements. Previously winner of the Moroccan Cup with FUS Rabat (2014) and the Qatari championship with Al-Duhail SC (2020), his best performance remains Morocco‘s fourth place at the 2022 World Cup.

He remains the first and only coach to guide an African team to the semi-finals of the FIFA World Cup.

Walid Regragui, AFCON 2033
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Adel Amrouche (Algerian, 55 years old), Tanzania coach

Appointed in March 2023, Amrouche previously managed Equatorial Guinea, Burundi, Kenya, Libya and Botswana. He also coached a couple of clubs in Algeria's Ligue 1 (USM Alger and MC Alger). His performances are satisfactory overall since this is the Taifa Stars' third appearance in Africa's biggest football tournament after 1980 and 2019.

Amrouche will try to lead Tanzania out of the group stages for the first time in history.

Adel Amrouche, AFCON 2023
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Avram Grant (Israeli, 68 years old), Zambia coach

The former Chelsea coach was appointed in December 2022. This is his second stint in charge of an African team after managing Ghana between 2014 and 2017. His work allowed the Chipolopolo of Zambia to return to the Nations Cup after three consecutive absences.

However, while Grant has won six titles in his career, only one of those came in the last two decades, when he won the Serbian Superliga title in 2012. He came close to winning the AFCON as Ghana's coach in 2015, but lost on penalties in the final.

Avram Grant, AFCON 2023
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Kelechi Udoka

Kelechi is an avid Enyimba fan who enjoys writing about the beautiful game. He has written thousands of articles for a few publications over the years.