Burger-King sponsored South Africa’s national Under-20 (Amajita) head coach, Thabo Senong, expressed his delight over Amajita qualifying for next year’s Africa U-20 Cup of Nations, adding that they outdone themselves in how they performed against Malawi in their second leg meeting.
Amajita beat Malawi 2-0 in an away third round second leg encounter out in Lilongwe to book their place in next year’s biennial continental show piece, where top four national teams that are to represent Africa in the 2019 Fifa U-20 World Cup tournament, will be decided.
The 2019 Africa U-20 Cup of Nations will take place from 24 February to March 12.
“I’d like to say well done to the boys and the supporting staff for this hard fought for wonderful result,” Senong said. “Everybody worked so hard in ensuring that Amajita qualifies for the Niger Afcon edition. When we reported for camp on July 6th, we knew that our players were going to peak in the second leg because most of them had come from an off season leading up to our preparations for the third and final round. They were at 60% when we played Malawi in Rustenburg, and now they were around 90%. I’m very happy with that. They gave superb performance.”
Asked what was his game plan for this encounter, leading up to this crucial second leg, Senong said: “We told our boys that as long as we do not concede, we’ll be closer to our dream of qualifying for next year’s Afcon U-20 tournament. We also highlighted that in our position play, we need to make sure that we create as many scoring chances as possible, while also working really had to convert as many as we could. We did that.
“With that said,” Senong added. “We’ve performed really well together as a team. This is something positive to look at with regards to football development in our country. We now have a big task at hand which is getting ready the national Under-20s for next year’s Niger continental tournament