Dr Patrice Motsepe

The Ghana Football Association could be in for a financial windfall as early as from August 2023 should the ambitious Africa Super League meet its promise.

On Wednesday, August 10 in Arusha, Tanzania, the Confederation of African Football (CAF) officially launched the Africa Super League. The event was held around CAF’s Ordinary General Assembly.

The competition is expected to generate about $200m dollars yearly.

While half of the amount ($100 million) shall be shared between participating clubs, the other half shall be invested in football development across Africa, with each of CAF’s 54 member associations – including the GFA – expected to receive at least one million dollars yearly as contribution to youth and football development.

Consequent upon the Super League, CAF shall also be able to increase the prize money of the Men’s and Women’s CAF Champions League.

In launching the Africa Super League (ASL) President of CAF, Patrice Mostepe said: “We are excited about the CAF Africa Super League and are confident that it will change the face and competitiveness of CAF and African football.

“The CAF Executive Committee took a decision to launch the CAF Africa Super League in August 2022. This League will officially kick-off in August 2023.

“We announced on 3 July 2022 that the total prize money of the CAF Africa Super League will be $100 million, with the winner receiving $11.5 million.

“We intend paying each Member Association $ 1million per annum from the CAF Africa Super League funds. We also intend allocating $50 million to CAF from these funds for Youth and Women’s football development and for all its other competitions to ensure that they are globally competitive.
Participating clubs must have a women’s team and an academy.”

The competition is set to begin in August 2023 with 24 clubs from 16 countries and 197 matches to be played.

Background

The project has been in the pipeline since it was first suggested by FIFA president Gianni Infantino in early 2020 and met with almost none of the derision and outrage that followed a similar attempt in Europe last year.

Only the players’ union in South Africa, in a statement this week, has criticised the plan, saying: “Professional football in South Africa and Africa could be at risk if the resolution to commence with the Super League is implemented and there may be no return from the wreckage that a Super League can become.”

Motsepe has promised sponsorship and revenue returns previously unheard of for African football, where the annual Champions League winner earns $2.5-million in prize money.

It is not clear whether CAF have finalised the list of clubs, but they will come from 16 different nations with a maximum of three per country.

They will play a group competition first, divided into three groups of eight clubs, before the majority of clubs move onto an American-style playoff system, including wild card berths.