Critic James Murua started #AfricanWriterWorldCupSquad in 2014:
He imagined an all-Africa squad, writing:
The task is simple really. Choose three goalkeepers, eight defenders, eight defenders and five strikers to send to [Russia] like in any world cup team. In this instance, the goalies are the ones that ensure that the they keep the faith as the last barrier against bad prose. The defenders wouldn’t be the ones we keep talking about in the news or blogs but like good defenders do a lot in ensuring that the craft is defended with good prose.
The midfielders would be of two types; the energetic types churning out many good books and supporting the business to have a positive bank balance. These are also the ones you see at festivals either well known or that you may never heard of but represent the continent’s prose the fullest. Strikers are the ones for whom everything they put out is a hit with the critics and the market.
Yesterday, ArabLit attempted a 23-author Egyptian squad, and hedged bets with three coaches.
Today, I chose only one coach. The selection felt complete and satisfying.
Again, remember, writers must be living to play, so no Mohammed Choukri, Ahmed Bouanani, Muhammad Zafzaf, Mohamed Leftah, Driss Chraïbi, or Malika Moustadraf.
And don’t @ me with your Paul Bowles.
Anis Arrafai, Muhammad Bennis, Rachida Madani
Yassin Adnan, Driss El Khouri, Hanane Derkaoui, Youssouf Amine Elalamy, Mostafa Nissaboury, Sukaina Habiballah, Mohammed Ait Hanna, Ismail Ghazali
Laila Lalami, Youssef Fadel, Abdellah Taïa, Leïla Slimani, Rachida Lamrabet, Abdelilah Hamdouchi, Tahar Ben Jelloun
Mahi Binebine, Fouad Laroui, Bensalem Himmich, Abdellatif Laâbi, Abdelkader Benali
Coach: Abdelfattah Kilito