A third title in sight for Ghana

14 years ago

Ghana’s quest for a third African U-17 title and Fred Osam Duodu’s hopes second successive crown at the same competition begins on Saturday when the 7th edition of the African U-17 Championship kicks off in Togo over the weekend.

A tricky challenge certainly but Ghana’s team and coach remain confident of completing the simultaneous mission which the two-time African and World champions at this level open her Group B account with a game against Burkina Faso on March 11 in the city of Kegue.

Ghana’s team left Accra on Tuesday with joy as the entire country celebrated half a century of independence from colonial rule.

With two titles already won by previous generations, the present Black Starlets are eager up to improve on the silver medal won by the 2005 squad who lost to tournament host, Gambia.

Incidentally, it was the first African U-17 title won by Fred Osam Duodu at Ghana’s expense when he led the Gambians to their first major continental success in football.

Now, he makes a return again to the same competition he last won but this time in a different capacity, as coach of Ghana.

And after almost a month-long training tour of Egypt where the team recorded some spectacular results, everyone is eager for the Togo showdown though they are not getting carried away with the successes chalked during their stay in the North African country.

Ghana, handed the top seeds tag are drawn in Group B with Nigeria, Burkina Faso and Eritrea.

After the opener with Burkina Faso on March 11, Ghana would line up three days later against Eritrea on March 14.

However the Black Starlets would save the best for the last when the clash West African rivals, Nigeria on March 17 in the final Group B game.

Togo, host of the Championship would kick off the competition with a game against South Africa on March 10 in Group A to be played in Kegue.

The group also has Gabon and Tunisia.

The final of the two-week championship comes off on March 24.