The tables are set for the final match at the ongoing African nations Cup for players under the age of 20 (U20 Afcon 2019) in Niger Republic.
Yesterday, we saw 7-time champions Nigeria lose in their bid to secure an 8th title when they lost their semi-final match to Mali, 4-3, on penalties. We also saw runners up in the last two editions of the competition, Senegal defeat South Africa by a lone goal to make it to yet another u20 Afcon finals.
As we await the final match, here are 5 facts about the u20 African Cup of Nations.
From its inception in 1979 to 1989, the competition was played on a home and away qualifying basis and without a host nation.
Since the tournament started having host nations, only 4 teams have won the title in front of home fans. Zambia (2017), Congo (2007), Ghana (1999) and Egypt(1991).
Ivory Coast is the team to have appeared in the highest number of final matches without ever winning the competition. They have appeared in and lost 3 final matches (1983, 1991, and 2003).
In 2015, the Confederation of African Football (CAF) Executive Committee changed the name of this competition from African Youth Championship to U20 African Cup of Nations
Nigeria is the most successful team in this competition, having previously won the title 7 times (1983, 1985, 1987, 1989, 2005, 2011, and 2015). Nigeria is also the only team to have defended the title when they won it 4 times back to back from 1983 – 1989.
With this year’s final match to be played between two teams that have never won the competition before, let us watch and see which team will come out on top.
Would it be a case of “third time’s a charm” for Senegal (this is their third final in as many consecutive tournaments) or is it time for the “Junior Eagles” of Mali to soar high?
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