​Niger 2019: Ethiopia Pitted Against Burundi in U-20AfCON Qualifier

The African U-20 Nations Cup qualifier set to kick off in late March 2018 as Ethiopia will be hosting Burundi at home to open their qualifier to get a spot on the 2019 tournament which is hosted by Niger. CAF confirmed the qualifier earlier today.

The Junior Waliyas are up against Burundi in the first round qualifier at the end of March. Ethiopia will be at home for the first leg which slated March 30, 31 or April 1. The return leg will be after 3 weeks in April 2018. The winner takes on Sudan in the second qualifying round before progressing to the final qualifying round. In the last qualifying round the winner could face either the winner of Rwanda and Kenya or reigning African U-20 champions and FIFA U-20 World Cup quarter finalists Zambia. The qualifier is expected to elapse on July.

Ethiopia failed to qualify for the last edition of U-20 AfCON, which was hosted by Zambia in 2017, after getting hammered by Ghana 5-2 on aggregate. The Junior Waliyas managed to secure a 4-1 victory over Somalia in the first round before going down 4-0 against Ghana in Cape Coast having a slander 2-1 lead from the first leg in Addis Ababa.

Coach Girma Habteyohannis led the team in 2016 and it is certain that the Ethiopian Football Federation will be naming yet another coach for the youth national side. It has become a custom of the Federation to hire coaches for almost all national sides both women and men when qualifier games comes fast approaching.

Sixteen countries have been given byes to the second round based on the results they have achieved in the last two editions. Twelve countries who qualified for the last two tournaments and four nations who went on till the semifinal are exempted from the first round qualifier. Angola, Burkina Faso, Congo Brazzaville, Cote d’Ivoire, Gambia, Ghana, Guinea, Egypt, Libya, Mali, Nigeria, Senegal, Sudan, South Africa and Zambia.

Niger will be hosting its first ever U-20 AfCON which will be also their first appearance on the tourney. Niger will be joined by other 7 countries in the U-20 AfCON.

Full Draw

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