Head coach of Nigeria’s Golden Eaglets, Nduka Ugbade has revealed that his side is solely focused on picking the World Cup ticket when they square up against Burkina Faso at the quarterfinal stage of the ongoing U17 Africa Cup of Nations (U17AFCON) in Algeria on Thursday, www.aclsports.com reports.
Eaglets booked their spot in the quarter-finals of the tournament by beating South Africa and now have a date with the Young Etalons of Burkina Faso in Algiers for a place in the semifinals and a world cup ticket.
“We had an interesting match with South Africa and it has prepared us well for further challenges in the competition, began the former U17 World Cup-winning coach.
“We learned a lot playing Zambia, Morocco and South Africa – all strong teams – in the group phase and that was a good furnace for us to be a better squad. The quarter-final matches will be very hard nuts to crack because that is the step that earns you the World Cup ticket. None of the four games will be easy. Our interest is Burkina Faso and we are working hard towards achieving success.”
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Just as Nigeria came from a goal down to beat the South Africans, Burkina Faso staged an incredible comeback to dump cup holders Cameroon out to reach this stage.
Ugbade added: “We have not come this far to drop out. My boys are focused hard on the World Cup ticket. After that, we can then focus on other objectives.”
Thursday’s quarterfinal match billed for the Nelson Mandela Stadium will kick off at 8pm Algerian time (same time in Nigeria). The winner of this contest will also book a place in this year’s FIFA U17 World Cup in November.