African women face tricky run at U-20 world cup 

The draw for the 2024 Fifa Under-20 Women’s World Cup in Colombia has set the stage for an intriguing challenge for the four African representatives – Cameroon, Ghana, Morocco and Nigeria. 

The 24-team tournament, which has grown from 16 at previous editions, is set to take place in Columbia, with the final set to take place on September 22 in the nation’s capital Bogotá. 

South Africa’s under-20 women’s national team, Basetsana, did not qualify. 

In October last year Basetsana played to a 2-all draw against Burundi in their second leg of the Fifa U20 Women’s World Cup qualifiers at Lucas Moripe stadium. 

The draw put paid to Basetsana’s qualification dreams after Burundi went through to the next round on the away goals rule. But now all eyes are on Nigeria, the most successful African nation in the tournament’s history with two runners-up finishes. The Falconets will face a daunting task in Group D. 

The Falconets have been pitted against European powerhouse Germany, as well as the Korea Republic and Venezuela, in what promises to be a fierce battle for qualification to the knockout stages. 

Ghana, making their seventh appearance at the U-20 World Cup, have been drawn in Group E alongside Japan, New Zealand and Austria. 

The Black Princesses will be keen to build on their impressive quarterfinal run in the 2022 edition, where they narrowly missed out on a semifinal berth. 

Cameroon, making their second appearance at the U-20 World Cup, find themselves in Group A alongside hosts Colombia, Australia and Mexico. 

The Young Indomitable Lionesses will be aiming to make their mark on the global stage and continue their impressive development in youth football. 

Morocco will have the opportunity to announce their appearance on the grandest stage of youth football as they take on reigning champions Spain, the US and Paraguay in the highly competitive Group C. 

The Atlas Lionesses’ participation in the tournament is a testament to the growth of women’s football in the North African nation having finished at the quarters in their maiden appearance two years ago. 

Beyond the African focus, the draw has set up several mouthwatering clashes, with reigning champions Spain facing a stern test against the US and Paraguay in Group C. 

Meanwhile, Group B features a tantalising clash between France and Canada, as well as the participation of Brazil and Fiji. 

As the global youth tournament expands to 24 teams for the first time, Africa’s finest young talents will have their mettle tested against formidable opposition in the pursuit of glory. 

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