Flying Eagles Target Eighth Title
The 2023 Africa U-20 Cup of Nations will kick-off in Cairo, Egypt on Sunday with Nigeria’s Flying Eagles looking to win a record extending eighth title.
Ladan Bosso’s tutored side head into the competition in buoyant mood having won 18 and drawn one of their last 19 outings.
The Flying Eagles were the standout team at the WAFU B U-20 regional tournament in May 2022 in Niger.
The Nigerian boys defeated eternal rivals, Ghana, Cote d’Ivoire and Benin Republic to win the competition and secure a berth in Egypt 2023.
The Flying Eagles are the most successful side in the history of the U-20 having won the competition.seven times in the past.
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The West Africans won their first title in 1983 and last tasted success in the competition in 2015 edging out hosts Senegal 1-0 in the final.
The Flying Eagles have lost only two finals in 1999 and 2007 while finishing third on three occasions in 1995, 2005, 2013 and fourth in 2019.
They are making a return to the competition after missing out two years ago in Mauritania.
“The boys have been motivated, they are in good shape, we have the full support of everyone around us and we’re positive in whatever we do.
“We want to be the best and so we have prepared a team that will beat the best.
“I have the confidence in the team and that we will take our chances.
“The least target (at the U20 AFCON) is qualification to the U20 World Cup, whatever happens after that will be a bonus.
“We can’t start well and finish badly,” head coach, Ladan Bosso.
“We’re fully prepared going into Egypt.
“We are unshaken that our opening game is against Senegal because we’re now 19 matches unbeaten right from the WAFU B qualifiers.
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We will make Nigerians proud, we only need their prayers and support and by the special grace of God we are coming back with the trophy,” captain Daniel Bamaiyi.
MATCH SCHEDULE (GROUP A)
19 February: Senegal – Nigeria, 19h00 Local time, Cairo International Stadium, Cairo
22 February: Nigeria – Egypt, 19h00 Local time, Cairo International Stadium, Cairo
25 February: Mozambique – Nigeria, 19h00 Local time, Cairo International Stadium, Cairo
By Adeboye Amosu
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