U-20 AFCON: Flying Eagles list to be released next week

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… to play Saudi Arabia in a friendly match

The Flying Eagles list for this year’s Africa U-20 Cup of Nations will be released by head coach, Paul Aigbogun next week.

The seven –time African champions, who finished as runners-up at the WAFU U20 Cup Championship in Lome, Togo in December, have been in a training camp at the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja for more than two weeks.

It was gathered that the players are expected to hit Niamey on 27th of January and will be lodged at the Hotel Royal in the Nigerien capital.

Senegal, which defeated Nigeria 2-0 in the final to win the WAFU U20 Cup, will battle fellow West Africans Mali, Ghana and Burkina Faso in Group B in the Nigerien city of Maradi.

To qualify for the biennial international youth football tournament, the Flying Eagles edged Guinea Bissau on aggregate, before blasting past Mauritania in the final qualifying fixture.

Nigeria will fight for honours against hosts Niger Republic, South Africa and Burundi in Group A of the 2019 Africa U20 Cup of Nations taking place 2nd – 17th February 2019.

The top four teams of the tournament will qualify for the 2019 FIFA U-20 World Cup in Poland as the CAF representatives.

Meanwhile, the Flying Eagles, will trade tackles with their Saudi Arabian counterparts in an international friendly ahead of next month’s Africa U20 Cup of Nations in Niger Republic.

Team Administrator, Aliyu Ibrahim Lawal told thenff.com that arrangements are in top gear for the seven –time African champions to fly out of Nigeria this weekend for the game billed for Tuesday, 22nd January in Jeddah.

Tuesday’s match will rekindle memories of the opening match of the 1989 FIFA U20 World Cup finals, in which the Flying Eagles came from behind to defeat the Saudis 2-1 inside the King Fahd International Stadium on 16th February 1989.

In that match, Al Suraiti got the Saudis in front after 16 minutes but Mutiu Adepoju and Christopher Ohenhen got second half goals that earned Nigeria three precious points. The Flying Eagles eventually finished the tournament as runners-up, after losing the final match 0-2 to Portugal.

Coach Paul Aigbogun is expected to travel to Jeddah with the squad he will be taking to Niger Republic for the U20 AFCON, where Nigeria will contest in Group A against host nation Niger, South Africa and Burundi.

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