Soccer News of Monday, 9 March 2015
Ghana begins another quest for African Under-20 glory with an opening Group B match against South Africa at Mbour, Senegal this afternoon.
The Black Satellites, runners-up in the last edition in Algeria two years ago, are keen on going a step further this time around. However, the head coach of the side Sellas Tetteh, has set his sights on an initial target of reaching the semi-finals to book a World Cup ticket before considering the ultimate.
“Our first objective is to qualify for the World Cup. We want to be among the best four and then we can start thinking about the trophy”, Tetteh, the African Cup and World Cup winner told www.ghanafa.org in the build up to the opening game.
For Tetteh, getting a dream start against South Africa in the opening game will be a big boost towards achieving his stated initial objective of picking one of the four slots to represent Africa at the Fifa Under 20 World Cup later this year.
“It will be very ideal for us to kick start this tournament in a grand style and have a very good take off but we also will not deny the fact that it’s not as easy as that.
“First games are always difficult because everyone is fresh, but we are ready and we are going to do our best and get a respectable result from the opening game.”
Sellas Tetteh has led the Black Satellites to two victories over South Africa at the African Championship in 2009, as well as at the Fifa World Cup, but he is not downplaying the threat they pose
“They (South Africa) are a familiar side but I respect every team that has qualified. The fact that we keep meeting them at tournaments should tell you the development and progression of their youth system.
“It won’t be an easy task; it will be an uphill task but when it gets to the crunch, we will overcome.”
Ghana is in Group B of the CAF U-20 Championship with South Africa, Mali and Zambia. The top two teams in the group will advance to the semi-finals of the competition as well as qualify for the FIFA Under 20 World Cup.
Kick off is at 16:30 GMT.