Nigeria’s Under-23 team, popularly known as the Dream Team have been placed in a group of death that consist of Ivory Coast, South Africa and Zambia for the 2019 African Under-23 Championships to be staged in Egypt from November 8-22.
Recall that Nigeria qualified for the group stage of the competition after mauling Sudan 5-1 on aggregate. The team lost the first leg 1-0 in Sudan before winning the second leg 5-0 at the Stephen Keshi Stadium.
Interestingly, Nigeria are the only one of the eight-team field to have lifted the trophy before, which they have managed in 2015, while South Africa and Egypt are the only other sides to have appeared in the knockout rounds.
The Imama Amapakabo-led team would be hoping to use the tournament to qualify Nigeria for the 2020 Olympic Games slated for Japan.
Only the top two teams in each pool advance to the semifinals and have two bites at an Olympics place in the Last 4 fixtures and the third-place play-off.
Hosts Egypt are the top seeds in Group A and they have a part of debutants at the championships in their pool in Cameroon and Ghana. Mali are the fourth team.