The draw ceremony for this year’s Africa U17 Cup of Nations will hold on Wednesday at the Cercle Nationale d’Armee in Algiers, capital city of Algeria.
Five-time world champions Nigeria is one of the 12 countries whose names will go into the pot for the draw, as all participating teams get to know their group phase opponents for the tournament scheduled for 8th – 30th April in Africa’s largest nation.
All the 12 participating nations are now known: Algeria, Nigeria, Morocco, Senegal, Mali, Burkina Faso, Somalia, South Sudan, Zambia, South Africa, Cameroon and Congo.
The 12 teams will be drawn into three groups of four teams each, with the four top-placed teams qualifying to represent Africa at this year’s FIFA U17 World Cup finals taking place in Peru later this year.
Meanwhile, the international friendly match between Nigeria and Zambia at the U20 boys’ level will now hold at the Moshood Abiola National Stadium, Abuja on Saturday, 4th February.
Both Nigeria and Zambia will face a country from the other’s region in Egypt, with Nigeria drawn against Mozambique (alongside host nation Egypt and Senegal) in Group A, while Zambia will face Benin Republic (alongside Tunisia and The Gambia) in Group C. Uganda, Central African Republic, South Sudan and Congo make up Group B.
Seven-time African champions Nigeria will fly to Morocco on Wednesday next week for their final round of preparations. Coach Isah Ladan Bosso’s wards have been in flaming form in recent weeks, lashing a slew of teams in friendly games.
Bosso’s wards were worthy champions of the WAFU B U20 Championship in Niamey, Niger Republic in May 2022, winning all their five matches in the competition.