The draw for the Total U-20 Africa Cup of Nations Niger 2019 were held on Thursday night in Niamey with Nigeria’s Flying Eagles drawn alongside hosts Niger in Group A of the competition billed for next year, AOIFootball.com reports.
The ceremony was held at the Technical Centre of the Niger Football Federation in the capital, with CAF Deputy General Secretary, Anthony Baffoe, conducting the draw with the assistance of two former Niger players representing different generations, Moussa Kanfidena, and Issoufou Dante.
Seven-time champions Nigeria are making a return to the competition after failing to qualify for the 2017 edition in Zambia and were drawn in a relatively fair group with neighbours Niger who are making their debut in the competition whilst returnee Burundi and South Africa complete the pairing.
Group B did, however, pitch an all West African affair with the quartet of Senegal, Mali, Burkina Faso, and Ghana all drawn in the dubbed ‘group of death’ with all four teams rekindling their existing rivalry as they battle for places at the last four.
The final tournament will be held from 2-17 February 2019 in the Niger cities of Niamey and Maradi and the semi-finalists qualifying to represent the continent at the FIFA U-20 World Cup in Poland.
Group A – Niger, South Africa, Nigeria, Burundi
Group B – Senegal, Mali, Burkina Faso, Ghana