The draw for the TotalEnergies CAF Women’s Champions League | COSAFA Qualifier will take place in Morocco at 13h00 CAT | 11h00 GMT | on Wednesday 20th July as the six competing Southern African teams learn their fate in the race for the continental finals. You can watch the draw live here!
The tournament itself will be held in Durban from August 7-13, where the champion clubs from around the COSAFA region will converge for the second staging of the championship after a hugely successful inaugural event in 2021.
The winners in Durban will advance to the 2022 TotalEnergies CAF Women’s Champions League finals that are to be held in Morocco later in the year, and where local side AS FAR await as hosts.
A total of 14 AS FAR players are in the current Morocco squad that will face South Africa in the final of the 2022 Africa Women’s Cup of Nations on Saturday, an illustration of just what a handful they will be.
But the Southern African teams must first earn the right to play in the continental finals and there are six teams competing for the single spot.
South African side Mamelodi Sundowns are both the defending COSAFA and continental champions after they lifted the trophies in both competitions last year.
They will be among the heavy favourites to do so again, but could face a stern challenge, especially from two teams from the region also returning.
Black Rhinos Queens from Harare made the decider last year, where they lost to Sundowns, but they will be absent as they cannot compete again due to the suspension of the Zimbabwe Football Association by FIFA.
Two sides apart from Sundowns who return for a second year in a row are Double Action Ladies from Botswana and Green Buffaloes of Zambia. They were both losing semifinalists in 2021 but will have learnt much from that experience and hope to be stronger for it.
The newcomers are Young Buffaloes from Eswatini, Costa do Sol from Mozambique and Comoros representatives Olympic de Moroni.
They will be something of an unknown quantity outside of their own countries but with the potential to spring a surprise.
The six teams will be split into two groups of three each and play one another in a round-robin format. The winner of each pool will advance to the final, with the second-placed teams to play in a bronze-medal match.
This year’s champions will book their place in the continental finals and hope to make it two in a row on the African stage for COSAFA in Morocco.
The competition will also be the forerunner to the ever-popular HOLLYWOODBETS COSAFA Women’s Championship that will be held in Gqeberha from August 31-September 11, another huge shot in the arm for women’s football in the region.