Rabat, Morocco – (African Boulevard News) – Golden Eaglets star defender Yahaya Lawali expresses his heartbreak after the U17 AFCON loss to Morocco. The Nigerian U-17 national team suffered a 1-0 loss to the young Atlas Lions on Wednesday at the Stade Municipal de Kénitra, leaving them with only one point from two games.
Despite creating more chances on the day, the Eaglets could not convert them into goals. Yahaya Lawali, who gave a good account of himself in defence, could not hide his disappointment after the game, saying, “It is heartbreaking to lose a game after doing everything to win it. We created more chances, but it was just not our day.”
The Eaglets, five-time U-17 world champions, started the tournament on a shaky note, drawing goalless against Tanzania in their opening game. The loss to Morocco puts their qualification for the knockout stages in jeopardy, with their final group game against Algeria a must-win fixture.
Coach Fatai Amoo’s side will need to improve their finishing to overcome the Algerians, who themselves were held to a goalless draw by Morocco in their opening game. The Eaglets will be looking to their captain Ahmed Abdullahi, who scored four goals in the WAFU B tournament en route to qualification, to lead the team to victory.
Despite the setback, the Golden Eaglets’ technical adviser, Nduka Ugbade, still believes that the team can progress to the knockout stages. He urged the players to remain focused and positive and also praised their efforts, saying, “We played well, but losing was a bitter pill to swallow. We just need to keep our heads up and get the job done against Algeria.”
The U-17 AFCON tournament is a platform for young African footballers to showcase their talents and be scouted by top European clubs. The tournament, which kicked off on May 13, 2023, is being hosted by Morocco and features eight countries from across the continent.
In conclusion, the Golden Eaglets have a huge task to qualify for the knockout stages of the U-17 AFCON tournament after a disappointing loss to Morocco. The Nigerian team must win their final group game against Algeria to progress. The team will be hoping to show their resilience and fighting spirit in their must-win fixture.