Namibia, China to clash in Under-23 football friendlies

Source: Xinhua| 2018-06-01 17:15:53|Editor: Li Xia
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WINDHOEK, June 1 (Xinhua) -- Namibia's under-23 football team heads to China on Friday ahead of two friendly matches on June 4 and 7.

According to the Namibia Football Association (NFA), the squad of 20 players will participate in preparatory games in China ahead of their 2019 African Under-23 finals qualifiers.

Head coach Timo Tjongarero said on Friday that the qualifying draw is still to be conducted and his team has to be ready for anything, hence the importance of the training camp in China.

“We are grateful for this invitation and the boys have been hard at work on the field going through the drills so that they can leave a mark in China," he added. "It will be a learning experience as well and the team will enjoy playing to find the right combinations to see what can work for us before the real business begins.”

In recent years, Namibia has won the COSAFA Cup for southern African nations at senior and under-17 level, also reaching the quarterfinals of the African Nations Championship. Tjongarero says this current crop of players want to build on these achievements.

“Of the many friendly games the team has played thus far, the most notable one was on May 19 when we defeated the Tertiary Institutes Sports Association of Namibia 1-0.”

Meanwhile, Namibia’s dreams of participating in the 2020 Tokyo Olympics will be decided by a tournament to be held in Egypt in November and December 2019.

The event will see the top three teams qualifying automatically for the Olympic Games, with the fourth-place finisher competing in a playoff match against a team from the Asian Football Confederation.