Nigeria U-17 coach Manu Garba has returned to the country after a scouting trip to Ghana, where he traveled to monitor two-time world champions Black Starlets.
It is understood that since February 2018, Garba and his lieutenants have been pleading with the Nigeria Football Federation for the Golden Eaglets to start preparations for the 2019 Africa U-17 Cup of Nations Zone 3 (West B Zone) qualifiers without success.
And after the head coach’s trip to Ghana, he has admitted that the Golden Eaglets face a tall order in their bid to qualify for the Africa U-17 Cup of Nations in Tanzania, noting that the Ghanaian players are very physical and big for their age-group.
The players Garba is planning to invite for the training camp are small, legitimate schoolboys, so they will find it difficult to compete with Ghana, Burkina Faso, Niger, Ivory Coast, Benin and Togo except they are properly trained for a long time before the regional qualifiers.
Whilst Ghana have started building a team for the qualifiers and even some of their outstanding players have traveled to Europe to undergo trials with clubs interested in their services, there is no fixed date for the start of the Golden Eaglets get-together.
Nigeria, the most successful nation in the history of the FIFA U17 World Cup,failed to qualify for the last edition of the tournament after losing 3-2 to Niger in the second round of the African qualifiers.