Ahead of their final 2013 African Youth Championship qualifying fixture, against Republic of South Africa, the U-20 National Team, also known as Flying Eagles, will trade tackles with the Junior Squirrels of Benin Republic in an international friendly match in Cotonou on Sunday.
NFF officials confirmed on Friday that the Flying Eagles’ delegation will depart from their Ilorin, Kwara State base on Saturday morning and arrive in Cotonou by evening of same day.
The clash with the Junior Squirrels is meant to prepare the six-time African champions for their first leg showdown with the South African U-20 side, Amajita, in Nelspruit on Friday next week.
The South African Football Association confirmed to the NFF on Friday that the big match will be played at the Mbombela Stadium, Nelspruit (one of the venues for the 2010 FIFA. World Cup finals) starting from 7pm South African time (6pm Nigerian time) on Friday, September 21.
Sunday’s tune-up at the Stade de L’Amitie, Cotonou will start at 4pm and is sure to provide the reigning African kings good shooting practice ahead of the match in Nelspruit.
The Flying Eagles will train in Cotonou on Monday and Tuesday before returning to Lagos, from where they will depart for Johannesburg aboard a South African Airways flight on Wednesday evening. They will arrive in Johannesburg on Thursday morning.
The Confederation of African Football has appointed Namibian referees to handle the match between Flying Eagles and the Amajita. Rainhard Shikongo will be centre referee, with David Shanika the 1st Assistant and H. Simson Shahungu the 2nd Assistant. The Reserve Referee is Andreas Helmut.
Mr. Bibi Georges from Seychelles will be the Match Commissioner.
The winner on aggregate will join six other winners and hosts Algeria for the 2013 African Youth Championship, already slated for March 16 –30, 2013.