Ahead of their pivotal matchup with the already-qualified Senegal in the final Group A game of the TotalEnergies U17 Africa Cup of Nations, the Somali U17 national team, which is playing in its first ever continental football competition at any age level, is filled with anticipation and excitement.
A historic berth in the knockout rounds and the chance to establish Somalia as a force to be reckoned with on the continental stage are both on the table in the game, which is scheduled for Friday at the Constantine.
In spite of losing to Algeria in the tournament’s opening match, Somalia still managed to tie Congo and earn its first-ever AFCON tournament point.
The young Ocean Stars are well aware of the challenge they face as they prepare for their match against Senegal.
Senegal struck Congo 1-0 before hammering Algeria 3-0 in their match day two .
Despite herculean task ahead of ocean stars ,Somali head coach Nur Mohamed remains optimistic that his boys will deliver.
“We came here to compete, not to participate. We respect our opponents who are already qualified and whether or not they rest players, we are focusing on what we can do as a team. We are hopeful of winning and reaching the quarters,” said the tactician.
Coach Mohamed says the first two games they played have given them enough experience and confidence and they will approach the third match as a better team, with a bigger hunger and ambition to win.
The team’s journey to Algeria is a shining example of the promising future for Somali football.