Former Golden Eaglets star, Nwankwo Kanu has classified Nigeria’s absence at the FIFA U-17 World Cup dated for October 6-28 in India as a gloomy occurrence for a nation who’ve won the championship for a record five times.
Nigeria failed to qualify for the AFCON U-17 in Gabon after they lost to Niger Republic in the qualifiers. The Golden Eaglets were both the African and world champions in 2015.
“It is hard to take that my country, Nigeria would not be participating in the championship in India,” said Kanu who won the Cup with the Eaglets in 1995, in a conversation with SCORENigeria.
Ghana, Mali, Niger and Guinea will represent Africa. Ghana in Group A, will face hosts India, USA and Colombia, while Mali will want to conquer Paraguay, New Zealand and Turkey in Group B. Guinea, will amuse Iran, Germany and Costa Rica in Group C, as Niger will combat Korea DPR, Brazil and Spain in Group D.
“Yes, African teams can do it”, ‘Papilo’ sounded confident. “My optimism stems from the fact that the continent has always been good in age group tournaments. “If I’m not mistaken, Africa has won the tournament more times than any other continent in the World since the tournament started in 1985 in China. “With (Africa) seven titles so far in the FIFA U17 championship, yes, of course, the continent can do it again, it is very possible”