Nigeria and Guinea earned berths in the semi-finals of the CAF U -17 championship in Niger after finishing first and second respectively in Group A on Saturday.
Nigeria thrashed Zambia 3-1 to finish top of the Group with seven points at the Stade Municipal. Hosts Niger stunned Guinea with a 2-1 defeat at the Stade Seyni Kountche but the Syli National scraped through with four points collected in the first two games. Zambia and Niger finished on three points each having won one and lost two of their matches respectively.
At Stade Seyni Kountche, Niger finished the Championship with two first half goals; Issoufou Boubabcar scored the opener after a beautiful run into the Guinean penalty area. The hosts doubled their score when Ismael Lara hit the net in the 39th minute to the delight of the home crowd after Guinea goalkeeper Djibril Yattara failed to collect a loose ball inside the area. Abdoulaye Keita had put Guinea on levels terms after 27minutes.
The second half saw no goals at the Stade Kountche but at the Stade Municipal, Nigeria and Zambia fought out a tough game which saw four goal with Nigeria skipper Kelechi Nwakali’s goal and a brace from Victor Osimeh.
Zambia skipper Patson Daka scored Chipolopolo juniors’ consolation goal but the tournament debutants did not turn into goals all their second half chances to shatter Nigeria’s lead.
The ticket of the Semi-final spot in the CAF U-17 championship is a berth at the FIFA U-17 World Cup finals, Chile 2015.
By: Jammeh E.K. Bojang