Wednesday, August 10, 2022

Young Zebras avoid big guns in COSAFA

Botswana has been drawn in a relatively fair group for the forthcoming Council for Southern Africa Football Associations (COSAFA) Under 20 tournament, sponsored by Metropolitan.

Botswana has been drawn in group A, together with Comoros, Swaziland and Mozambique.

With the exception of Mozambique, other countries have never really given Botswana a tough time.

Mozambique is the one that sometimes gives Botswana a run for their money but the standard of football in the country has been waning over the years.

Botswana hosts the tournament for the second successive year after it had been held in South Africa for many years.

Botswana, however, has never done well in the Under 20 tournaments and mostly bow out in the preliminary stages.

The biggest achievement has been the semi-finals about three years ago. Teams that normally do well in youth tournament are the likes of Madagascar, Zambia, Zimbabwe and South Africa.

The Technical Director of Botswana Football Association, Sonnyboy Sethibe, told Telegraph Sports that Botswana is already drilling a strong team that he believes will do well.

“Last year, we hosted the tournament and did not do well; this year, we are hosting it again and we want to do much better. We already have a team that recently went to South Africa. We are also looking forward to hosting four nations’ tournament here in Botswana against strong sides. We are really serious and, hopefully, we will do well,” he said.

For the first time, the tournament will have a guest team from East Africa, which is Tanzania.

The Chief Operations Officer of COSAFA, Sue Destombes, added that the invitation of Tanzania will prompt the East African region to also invite Southern African teams. Destombes also added that all teams have confirmed their participation, unlike in the past whereby only half of the teams made it. Other groups Group B (Seychelles, Malawi, Lesotho) Group C (Zambia, Tanzania, South Africa, Mauritius), Group D (Angola, Madagascar, Namibia and Zimbabwe.

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