Africa’s long road to the FIFA U-17 Women’s World Cup India 2020 hits another important point this weekend when the second of three stages have been completed.
The continent’s big guns are all involved in the battle for six places in the final qualifying round, with three berths ultimately to be allocated in India 2020. And while the story prefers two teams, in particular, some lesser-known names seem to be in the running.
Ghana and Nigeria were dominant teams at this age in Africa. The Black Maidens have been ubiquitous at the U-17 Women’s World Cup, and the flamingos have been featured in all but one of the six previous editions. At the moment, however, these two giants are on the way to a showdown from which only one of them will emerge.
Both have recorded convincing away wins in their first leg matches against Liberia and Guinea. If they finish the job this weekend, the Ghanaians and Nigerians will have to fight for a single World Cup place in the second round in May.
📸📸: Congratulations, Flamingos.— NGSuper_Falcons (@NGSuper_Falcons) March 7, 2020
Bankole Olowookere’s team made a strong start to their qualification bid for this year’s U17 Women’s World Cup in India, with a 6-1 first leg win in Conakry.#SoarFlamingos #GUINGA #U17WWCQ pic.twitter.com/YIqdv225Cp
This gives additional hope to some of the qualifier’s dark horses.
Zambia, for example, has a 2-0 lead over South Africa in the first leg and hopes to be able to build on the feel-good factor determined by the shock qualification of the senior team for the women’s Olympic football tournament.
Éliminatoires Coupe du Monde Féminine FIFA U17 #Inde2020— Fecafoot-Officiel (@FecafootOfficie) March 1, 2020
Célébration des #LionnesU17 après leur large victoire sur São Tomé.
🇸🇹 São Tomé 0⃣➖4⃣ Cameroun 🇨🇲
⚽⚽ Diane Wabeua 14' 44'
⚽ Brenda Tabe 45'
⚽ Ngo Nka'a Michelle 70'
💚❤💛 #AllezLesLionnes #Ilionness pic.twitter.com/LojuCYqcky
U17WWC CAF qualifiers: First round, first leg results
Zambia 2-0 South Africa
Botswana 0-1 Morocco
São Tomé and Príncipe 0-4 Cameroon
Liberia 0-2 Ghana
Tanzania 2-1 Uganda
Guinea 1-6 Nigeria
The winners of the three second-round ties, scheduled for between 1 and 17 May, will go on to represent Africa at the FIFA U-17 Women’s World Cup.