With host nation Ghana’s 4-1 victory over Nigeria in the final match on Sunday, Sept. 24, the inaugural West African Football Union (WAFU) Cup of Nations tournament came to a close. This new sporting event was broadcast in 22 countries in Africa, and distributed to more than 125 million FOX Sports subscribers across Africa, Europe, Asia and the U.S.
This milestone is the result of FOX Sports’ 12-year partnership with WAFU Zones A and B, which was announced in December 2016 and includes regional quarterly events; events for U17, U20, U23 and core women’s teams; and seminars and workshops on a range of subjects to increase skill development on and off the pitch. Proceeds generated by the Cup of Nations will be reinvested into West African football to create a more sustainable and robust industry, and to provide training, infrastructure and stability to the region.
“Football is the most popular sport in Africa, and through our new 12-year partnership, not only are we investing in all areas of the industry, we are ensuring the broadcast of more games from the Zone West Cup tournaments to the millions of fans in Africa, all in our signature FOX Sports quality,” said Frank Rutten, EVP, FOX Sports Europe and Africa. “We have a proven track record of creating and delivering premium sports programming for local audiences that have the potential to travel to a global audience, and we are thrilled that so many people around the world were able to enjoy our first tournament, a testament to the quality and excitement of West African football.”
The Cup of Nations, which featured WAFU Zones A and B’s 16 teams, was designed to showcase the incredible talent in West Africa and provide a new platform for the region’s football players. Thousands of fans attended the tournament’s matches at the Cape Coast Sports stadium, and several matches were sold out. FOX Sports, the tournament’s exclusive broadcaster, delivered its signature high-quality production values in its presentation to millions of local viewers.
FOX Sports, which is broadcasting every Zone A and B match for football fans across Africa for the first time, aims to take the biannual Cup of Nations tournament to other West African countries in coming years.
Adam Theiler, EVP, Fox Networks Group, Europe and Africa, said, “West African footballers have not only helped to build one of the strongest football regions across the continent, but also have dazzled audiences on the global stage by competing in top tier leagues around the world. West Africa is a fountain of talent and football pride, and following the great success of our inaugural tournament, we will continue to showcase these world-class athletes for football fans everywhere.”
The partnership between FOX Sports and WAFU Zones A and B is part of FOX Sports’ continued vision for a sustained and local presence in Africa, where Fox Networks Group Europe & Africa offers a portfolio of channels blending local content with its global brands to provide distinctive and premium programming to 9 million pay TV households across the continent. This partnership with WAFU joins FOX Sports’ growing roster of sports rights in the continent, including Eredivisie, Belgian Jupiler Pro League, English Football League, Ligue1, Euro League Basketball and the UFC.