The Nigeria U20 team before the qualifier against Tanzania (Photo: Samm Audu/Flying Eagles)
Manu Garba and the coaching crew of the Nigeria U20 team have said nine players will be dropped from the side, before they depart for the Championship billed for Senegal.
30 players are presently sweating it out in camp, out of which only 21 will be on the final list.
The team’s assistant coach, Nduka Ugbade, revealed that the coaching crew is working round the clock to select the best players for the tournament.
The former Junior international also announced that they will be using the Super Six pre-season tournament in Abuja to assess the performance of the players.
Meanwhile the Flying Eagles, have expressed confidence they will give a good account of themselves at the expanded Super 4 tournament, which kicks off today at the Abuja National Stadium.
The Flying Eagles and the Nigeria U23 team have been handed special invitations to feature in the pre-season competition, which has drawn league champions Kano Pillars, Enyimba, Warri Wolves and Dolphins.
The Nigeria U20, who arrived Abuja on Thursday from their training base in Kaduna, will play their first match today at the Abuja National Stadium against league runners-up Enyimba.
Kick-off is 3pm.
On Monday, they will take on Pillars, before they battle Warri Wolves on Wednesday and Dolphins on Friday.
Their final match in this round-robin competition will be Sunday, February 1, against Dream Team. Match times are 1pm, 3pm and 5pm.
Flying Eagles assistant coach Nduka Ugbade said he is confident the team will do well in the Super 4.
“We have worked hard in Kaduna and we believe the team will show this at such a high-performance competition like this, Ugbade said.
“This is a very good test for us ahead of the African Youth Championship in March in Senegal as it will afford us the chance to see how far we have gone in our preparations and make any necessary corrections before the AYC.”
The national U20s have been boosted with the arrival of Musa Yahaya from the Tottenham Hotspur youth team and Chidera Eze, who is with the FC Porto youth setup.
Skipper Musa Muhammed, Ifeanyi Matthew and Wilfred Ndidi, who have been away in Europe, are expected to join up before the team’s first game against Enyimba.