The cadet Lions of Cameroon will start their TotalEnergies Under-17 Africa Cup of Nations title defense in a tricky group C that will see them take two-time tournament winners Mali, 2011 champions Burkina Faso, as well as newbies – South Sudan.
Burkina Faso are returning to the competition for the first time since they won the title in 2011. South Sudan are debutants but will hope to spoil the party for the so called big boys.
Three months before tourney, the Confederation of African Football (CAF) conducted the draw on Wednesday at its premises in Cairo.
Hosts Algeria inherited group A with Senegal as its main competitor, having had outstanding performances in different categories across the continent in the last two years.
Congo Republic, absent from the last three editions, and debutants Somalia, complete the pool as both will look to create surprises.
In Group B, Nigeria, semi-finalists of the previous edition, will start as favorites ahead of Morocco, who were eliminated in the group stage in 2019. South Africa had a scintillating qualifying campaign and make their return after years of absence from the two previous editions. Zambia equally fancies its chances despite never having gone passed the group stage.
South Africa 🇿🇦
Burkina Faso 🇧🇫
South Sudan 🇸🇸
Group A matches will take place in Algiers, group B games in Constantine and group C match-ups will be held in Annaba. The first two of each group and the two best 3rd placed teams will advance to the quarter-finals. The four semi-finalists will validate their ticket for the U17 World Cup, scheduled from November 10 to December 2, 2023 in Peru.