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Niger 2019: Rwanda Starts with Kenya in the Qualifying Campaign

by Bonnie Mugabe
4:50 pm

Striker Innocent Nshuti will lead Rwanda’s hunt for a place in next year’s Africa U20 Cup of Nations finals when they start the qualifying campaign against Kenya late next month. Courtesy Photo

Rwanda has been drawn to face Kenya in the qualifiers for the 2019 Africa U20 Cup of Nations released on Sunday by the Confederation of African Football (CAF).

According to Rwanda Football Federation (FERWAFA), the Junior Wasps will face Kenya in two-legged first round qualifiers.

The first leg is scheduled to be played in the weekend of March 30,31 to April 1 while the return leg is due in the weekend of April 20-22, 2018 in Kigali.

The winner between Rwanda and Kenya will face defending champions Zambia in the second round. The second round qualifiers are scheduled for May, 2018.

In the previous qualifying campaign held in 2016, Rwanda bowed out in the second round after losing 2-3 on penalties following a 1-all draw aggregate tie.

The final qualifying round will be staged in July with the winners earning automatic slots to next year’s Africa U20 Cup of Nations.

In other first round fixtures, Mauritania will take on Morocco, Guinea Bissau will face Sierra Leone, Algeria will face Tunisia, Liberia will face Benin, Gabon will take on Togo, while Ethiopia has been drawn against Burundi.

Zambia, Guinea, Nigeria, Gambia, Burkina Faso, Libya, Cote d’Ivoire and Sudan have been given a bye into the second round.

Zambia are defending champions after winning the 2017 edition held in Lusaka following a 2-0 goal against Senegal in the final.

Rwanda last hosted the 2009 edition of the CAF U-20 Nations Cup and could only manage to finish third in their group which was composed of Ghana, Cameroon and Mali respectively.

The Total U-20 Africa Cup of Nations is the main international youth football competition for CAF nations, and is competed for by under 20 year olds.

It is held every two years with the top 4 teams qualifying for the FIFA U-20 World Cup.

Africa U20 Cup of Nations Qualifiers

First Round Qualifiers

First Leg: 30,31/3-1/4/2018

Return leg: 20,21,22/4/2018

Kenya vs Rwanda

Mauritania vs Morocco

Guinea Bissau vs Sierra Leone

Algeria vs Tunisia

Liberia vs Benin

Gabon vs Togo

Ethiopia vs Burundi