Nigeria’s U-17 coach Manu Garba has disclosed that his wards have not yet reached the level to compete at the Africa U-17 Cup of Nations, billed for Tanzania in April.
According to him, this was why it was necessary the team participated in the Turkey invitational tournament so that the players can have a taste of competition.
The five-time FIFA U-17 World Cup champions are aiming to return in a big way after they failed to qualify for the AFCON tournament in 2017 and thus missing the chance to defend their 2015 World Cup title in India.
“We are just into a week in training and I can say we are more than fifty percent set in aspect of techniques and tactical ability.
“As for physical fitness, we are still a bit behind. That notwithstanding, we are trying to meet up with everything.
“We want to make sure we get to at least eighty percent level of fitness so that we can give our best in the preparatory tournament in Turkey.
“The ultimate is to go to Tanzania, qualify for the World Cup as African champions, Nigeria being the best at U17 level.
“God willing, we will raise a team that will make Nigeria proud by qualifying for the World Cup as African champions.”
Nigeria are in Group A, alongside Tanzania, Angola and Uganda.