South African National Under-20 (Amajita) coach Thabo Senong has put together a powerful squad he thinks will compete at the forthcoming CAF African Youth championships 2015 scheduled for Senegal from 8-22 March. The squad is made up of three goalkeepers, seven defenders, six midfielders and five strikers. Senong says: ‘I am very happy with this team. As I have always said, we are going to Senegal to compete and probably go all the way. When one enters into a competition, the primary objective is to go all the way.’ Senong will be assisted by David Notoane and Wendell Robinson who is also the goalkeeper coach.
The squad is a mixture of players plying their trade in the Premier Soccer League, the First Division with a few from overseas-based clubs. Most of the squad are members who won the Commonwealth Cup in St Petersburg, Russia in January. Senong says: ‘We have done a lot of preparations here at home and will fine-tune everything in Senegal where we have lined up two matches against the hosts. That should be enough.’ Senong added that Amajimbos’ recent qualification for the World Cup in Chile would work as a tonic for Amajita.
The coach says: ‘The young boys have paved the way for us to emulate them. Their mission when leaving these shores for Niger was Road to Chile; ours is Road to New Zealand. We are in a tough group but we are relishing the challenge.’ South Africa are in Group B together with Ghana, Mali and Zambia while Group A is made up of hosts Senegal, Nigeria, Congo and Cote d’Ivoire. The two top teams from each group will automatically qualify for the World Cup in New Zealand.