Sep 1, 2009, 5:25 AM
Three foreign-based stars of the Gambia national U-20 team have joined the rest of their team mates in camp as the Darling Scorpions continue preparations for next month's Caf African U-20 Youth Tournament in Tripoli, Libya.
The three stars are Alieu Darboe of Le Mans in France, Matar Jobe, "aka" Nesta, of Vulur Club in Iceland and Abubacarr Touray Drammeh who plied his trade in Spain.
The team, under the guidance of coach Lamin Sarr, Sunday moved to camp at the Paradise Suites Hotel in Kololi in preparation for the proposed friendly international match due to take place in Ethiopia on February 28.
Sarr and his charges who entered six weeks of an intensive training sessions at the Serrekunda East and Brikama Box Bar mini-Stadiums are expected to leave Banjul for Ethiopia on Thursday ahead of the friendly game looking set to revive the country’s glory at the continental Youth championship when the Libya tournament kicks off in less than a month.
Speaking yesterday to Pointsport at the team's training camp at the Paradise Suites Hotel, Sarr described the level of preparation for the tournament as good, saying: "I have confidence in my players and I am also quite positive about the team's chances of bringing glory to the nation in Libya."
He added: "As at now the level of preparation is good after six weeks of training programmes as the date for the championship draws closer."
The U-20 coach, who led the Darling Scorpions to the Libya championship at the expense of the much fancied Ivory Coast youth side in the final day of an intensive qualifiers in Abidjan, also told our reporter that the rest of the invited foreign-based stars yet to be in town have until February 27 to arrive ahead of the friendly game in Ethiopia.
Only little success was expected from Lamin Sarr who went through some miserable moments when he initially took the helm of affairs as the U-20 coach, before recording a dramatic qualification berth that took the team to the eight-team CAF Championship in Tripoli.
He says he is hopeful of achieving similar success together with his two assistants Abdoulie Bojang of Steve Biko and Foday Bah of Wallidan.
"I am not underrating the type of players at my disposal at the U-20 and the quality of players we have with us makes me really optimistic of the country's chances of achieving the desired result in Libya," Sarr said.