Golden Eaglets Are Team To Beat In U-17 AFCON – Ikpeba
By Amaechi Agbo
Former U-17 player and Super Eagles forward Victor Ikpeba has rated the Golden Eaglets as favourite ahead of the commencement of the 2021 U-17 Africa Cup of Nations in Morocco on Saturday next week, Besthcoicesports.com.ng can report
Ikpeba who was a member of the Eaglets in the 1989 FIFA U-17 World Cup warned that Nigeria should not look at history if she wants to make appreciable impact in the tournament.
Ikpeba stated this during the Monday Football programme on Supersports, where he also warned that most African countries have come of age when it comes to age-grade football.
Going into the tournament in Group B along Congo, Tanzania, and Algeria the former AS Monaco of France forward advised Nigeria to be weary of complacency adding that there are no underdogs in football anymore
The former Africa Footballer of the Year winner appealed to the technical crew to allow the players to express their God-giving talent.
“Yes, we should forget about history if we are looking at history. But the truth of the matter is that the Golden Eaglets are the team to beat at the Africa U-17 Nations Cup. You can count out Congo, Egypt, and Ivory Coast.
“Mind you, these days we are not a dominant factor any longer compared to the 80s and 90s we are a force to reckon in Africa and the world. African countries are now catching up with Nigeria.”
Nigeria, Ghana, Cameroon, Gambia ana Mali are joint highest winners of the tournament with two trophies each.
Despite the Golden Eaglets dominant at the FIFA U-17 World Cup stage as the most successful country with five trophies, the Eaglets have not reciprocated same in the continent winning just two editions of the competition in 2001 and 2007.
The 2021 U-17 Africa Cup of Nations will start from 13th March through 31st.