Ahead of Cadet Draws – Ghana and Nigeria miss out
Already absent at the 2009 U-17 CAN in Algeria Ghana and Nigeria will also miss the next edition where the final phase will take place from January 8 to 22, 2011 in Rwanda. (Photo: Ghana)
After having emerged world champions in 1991 and 1995 and African champions in 1995 and 1999, Ghana was this time eliminated by Senegal in a penalty shoot out. On its part, Nigeria, who were world champion in 1985, 1993 and 2007, and winner of the CAN in 2001 and 2007, suffered the same fate in the first round against Congo.
Both sides have often been known for their beautiful youth football will miss the rendezvous. They will be consoled at the junior level as they have qualified for the CAN in that category, which will be organised next March in Libya.
The U-17 CAN will provide the opportunity for Rwanda (the host country), Congo, Senegal and probably Reunion to come to limelight, with the latter having beaten Burkina Faso on November 26 (the return match was delayed by a week due to the presidential election in Burkina Faso). Egypt the winner in 1997 and semi finalists in 2003 will be participating for the third time, which is also the case for Ivory Coast who was fifth in 1997 and third in 2005.
The title holder, Gambia, will attempt to win a third crown after its triumph in 2005 and 2009.
Finally, Mali who eliminated Cameroon will play in its sixth final phase of a competition where it reached the semi final four consecutive times; 1995, 1997, 1999 and 2001.
This will also be the case of Burkina Faso if it makes up for its one goal deficit against Reunion. Having been finalists in 1999 and 2001, the team ended third in the last edition.
Following the result of recent years, Gambia appears favourite having been crowned twice in the last three editions, but the 9th U-17 CAN promises to be very open.
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