Nigeria’s cadet national team, Golden Eaglets’ former coach, Emmanuel Amuneke is sharing his allegiances for the Africa U-17 Cup of Nations with his fatherland and country where he now earns a living, Tanzania.
In an apparent effort not to appear to be demeaning either of the two countries, Amuneke has tipped the Eaglets and Tanzania to qualify from Group A of next year’s competition.
Tanzania, who will play as hosts, are in the same group with Nigeria, Angola and Uganda, but Amuneke, who now handles the host country’s senior national team, Taifa Stars, says the two nations will pull through.
That means Nigeria and Tanzania will qualify for next year’s FIFA U17 World Cup, since all semi-finals at the U-17 AFCON in April will make it to Peru 2019, which will run from October 5 to 27.
Amuneke, who led Nigeria to a fith global title at Chile 2015, following earlier victories in 1985, 1993, 2007 and 2013, said he expects Tanzania and the Eaglets to lock horns again in the U-17 AFCON 2019 final.
The 13th edition of the African Cadet Championship will hold from April 14 to 28 in Tanzania, and Amuneke admits his love is for the two nations that he owes allegiance to.
He predicted: “Nigeria and Tanzania will qualify from their group. It is really a tough group with Angola and Uganda in the same group.
“But I have strong conviction that Nigeria’s Golden Eaglets and Young Taifa Stars will finish above their other group foes.”