Gambia to play Ghana in Afcon U-20 semis today

Mar 1, 2021, 12:29 PM | Article By: Arfang M.S. Camara & Lamin Darboe

The Young Scorpions of The Gambia will play Ghana in the ongoing Africa Cup of Nation U-20 semi-finals today, Monday at the Stade Olympique in Mauritania’s capital Nouakchott at 4pm.

The clash will be the second meeting between the sides after The Gambia U-20 team defeated three-time champions Ghana 2-1 at the group stage to progress in the knockout phase.

The Gambian side under the guidance of Coach Matarr Mboge booked their place into the semi-finals stage after defeating Central African Republic 3-0 on Friday.

The Young Satellite of Ghana beat Cameroon 4-2 on post-match penalties after a 1-1 scoreline in Nouakchott on Thursday to qualify for the Total Under-20 Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) semi-finals.

Meanwhile, ahead of today’s encounter, Coach Matarr Mboge revealed that he and his side would want to earn success in Mauritania in honour of the country’s fallen legends Alhaji Momodo Njie alias Biri Biri and coach Sulayman Kuyateh.

Biri Biri, who was Spanish club Sevilla’s first black player passed away last July while Coach Kuyateh, a revered tactician in the country passed away last Thursday after a brief illness.

However, at the time of his passing, Saul Kuyateh as he was fondly called was the coach of Gambia’s Second Division side Samger FC.

“We lost a huge legend last year in Biri Biri and it was a massive hit for football in The Gambia because he was a great player and a symbol of Gambian football and inspired most of us including me. Throughout this tournament he has also been an inspiration for me to try and do well for the country just like he did,” Gambia head Coach Mattar M’Boge told the press in Nouakchott.

He added that last Thursday they met the sad news of the passing of one of their colleagues in the country (Coach Sulayman Kuyateh) who has brought up most of the players they have in the squad.

He said they received news of his dead with a lot of sadness.

According to him, after receiving the news of Saul Kuyateh’s death, they decided as a team that the best way to pay tribute to them was by giving a good performance in this tournament and to get to the semi-finals.

He further said that despite the pain of losing Coach Kuyateh, they are happy that they have achieved something for him by going into the semi-finals.

Meanwhile, the other semi-finals encounter of the tournament will feature debutants Uganda and Tunisia for a historic place in the final at their maiden appearance, to take place at the Stade Olympique in Mauritania’s capital Nouakchott at 7:30 p.m.