February, 19 2023.
The 17th edition of what used to be African Youth Championship, or the Tesema Cup, as Organised by the Confederation of African Football (CAF), kicks off today in Egypt, with four teams, in action.
The opening day of the tournament, now known as CAF's Under-20 Africa Cup of Nations will see Senegal's Curb Lions of Teranga up against the Flying Eagles of Nigeria, record seven time Champions at this level; at the Cairo International Stadium, starting from 6pm, Nigerian time.
In all, twelve teams are competing in the tournament, for the first time, an increase from eight teams; and the goals for each side are two: to reach at least the semi-final stage, which automatically qualifies the last four clubs, for the FIFA Under-20 World Cup, to be staged in Indonesia, later this year.
Above all is the contest of which of the four semi-final teams, will go to Indonesia as the ultimate champions of the 17th edition of the tournament; and the bragging rights inherent in winning the top prize.
The Flying Eagles of Nigeria are being managed by Coach Ladan Issa Bosso in Egypt, and this is his second stint with the team, he also led to the later stages of the World Cup, in Chile 2008.
Prior to departing Abuja to Accra, enroute Morocco, where they applied the gloss on their preparation for the tournament; the Flying Eagles won all of their friendlies here, including the 4-2 defeat of the U-20 Copper Bullets of Zambia, at the MKO Abiola National Stadium.
The 25-Man team, which was latter pruned to 21 also played and won a few friendly games in Morocco, before their depature to Cairo, on Thursday for the tournament, which kicks-off, this evening with the host nation, U-20 Pharaohs of Egypt, taking on their counterparts from Mozambique, 3 hours earlier.
The players to watch in the Flying Eagles team includes Augustine Njoku, Daniel Daga who faced the media alongside Coach Bosso yesterday, Francis Ayuba, and Plateau United player
Emmanuel Uchegbu; who scored 2 goals in two matches in Morocco.