- The 32nd edition of the African Cup of Nations 2019 kicks off on Friday
- Host nation Egypt plays Zimbabwe first
- Egypt has upped its stadium game to accommodate the prestigious event
The 32nd edition of the African Cup of Nations 2019 will officially kick off on Friday, June 21 in Egypt.
Host nation Egypt will curtain-raise the tournament with an opening match against Zimbabwe at the iconic Cairo International Stadium.
Briefly.co.za learnt that the venue is scheduled to host 10 matches during the almost month-long continental showpiece, including the finals.
Opened in 1960 as Nasser Stadium, the facility has undergone an incredible transformation over the years and currently boasts a 75,000 seating capacity.
Interestingly, back then, the stadium could hold over 100,000 spectators, with unofficial attendances said to have reached over 120,000.
It was however later made an all-seater stadium, decreasing its capacity to 75,000 to meet CAF standards.
Its major refurbishing happened 14 years ago as part of the country's preparations for the 2006 Africa Cup of Nations.
Egypt's national football team occasionally uses the stadium for high-profile matches, alongside the country's top clubs Al Ahly and Zamalek.
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