U-17 WORLD CUP: NIGERIA DRAWN AGAINST ECUADOR, AUSTRALIA IN BRAZIL
Nigeria’s Golden Eaglets have been drawn alongside Australia, Hungary and Ecuador in Group B of the 2019 FIFA Under-17 World Cup.
The 24-team tournament, scheduled to kick off on October 26, 2019, will be hosted by Brazil, and will run through to the November 17. Four host venues have been selected in three cities: Goiania, Gama and Cariacica
Nigeria, five-time world champions at U-17 level, is one of four African representatives, having finished third at the 2019 Under-17 Africa Cup of Nations in Tanzania in April. The other two – Cameroon, Angola and Senegal – are drawn in Groups E, A and D respectively.
It will be recalled that Guinea qualified as runners-up at the U-17 AFCON, but were disqualified following an age-falsification controversy involving two players: Ahmed Tidiane Keita and Aboubacar Conte. The Executive Committee of the Confederation of African Football (CAF) took the decision to replace them with Senegal.
The Golden Eaglets will kick off their campaign by facing Hungary in Goiania on the opening day, and then face Ecuador three days later in the same stadium. Nigeria’s final group match will take place on November 1 against Australia in Gama.
Hungary won a play-off on penalties against Belgium to qualify from the UEFA European Under-17 Championship, and are making only their second-ever appearance on the global stage at U-17 level. Ecuador secured the fifth and final spot in South American qualifying, and Australia qualified by virtue of making the semi-finals of the 2018 AFC Under-16 Championship.