The Total African Nations Championship (CHAN Total) is a biennial football tournament contested by 16 qualifying African national teams. The teams are composed exclusively of players who play in their countries’ national leagues. First held in 2009, the tournament has been held during even-numbered years since 2014 and has become a showpiece tournament of African football.
In 2007, the Confederation of African Football decided to create a new tournament to give local African players the opportunity to showcase their talent at the international level. By allowing only those who play in the national leagues to take part in the competition, CAF also aims to improve the quality of national leagues.
First title for the Atlas Lions
The Total African Nations Championship 2018 was the fifth edition of the championship and was held in Morocco between January 12 and February 4. The hosts Morocco beat Nigeria 4-0 in the final to win their very first CHAN.
Forty-eight national teams sought to participate in the tournament. The qualifying tournament was organized by geographic zones with two or three spots being awarded to each zone. Defending champions DR Congo failed to qualify after losing to the Republic of Congo in the qualifiers. Meanwhile, Equatorial Guinea and Namibia qualified for their first ever Total African Nations Championship.
Looking back at the first five editions
Eight teams participated in the first edition of African Nations Championship. That number doubled to 16 in 2011. To avoid clashing with the Total Africa Cup of Nations, the African Nations Championship switched to even-numbered years in 2014.
Despite not taking part in CHAN Total 2018, DR Congo is the competition’s most successful team, having won two out of the five championships. They won the first Total African Nations Championship, before winning again in 2016.
The next edition of the Total African Nations Championship—CHAN Total 2020—will take place in Cameroon.
Title for Morocco