Musonye says youth key as CECAFA make a leap


Musonye says youth key as CECAFA make a leap

In Summary

  • The Confederation of East and Central Africa (CECAFA) Secretary General Nicolas Musonye has attributed improved youth development programs for the region's emergence as a footballing force in Africa
  • Four countries from CECAFA have qualified for the African Cup of Nations (AFCON) Finals with Burundi - who will make their first ever appearance in Egypt - highlighting the region's rise

The Confederation of East and Central Africa (CECAFA) Secretary General Nicolas Musonye has attributed improved youth development programs for the region’s emergence as a footballing force in Africa.

Four countries from CECAFA have qualified for the African Cup of Nations (AFCON) Finals with Burundi – who will make their first ever appearance in Egypt – highlighting the region’s rise.

Kenya is marking its return to the continental competition after 15 years in the cold while Tanzania will also make their first appearance in 39 years. Uganda are making their second successive appearance after exiting from the group stages in 2017.

Musonye was happy to disqualify the notion that it came as a surprise to them for the performance of the CECAFA region teams in the qualifiers .

“We are not surprised because since our 2015 congress which was held here in Nairobi, we came to a conclusion that time has reached for this region to do be felt in Africa.

We were in Burundi last year in the U-17 and U-20 tournaments and you can see that these national teams which have qualified have young talented players who have done well ”, he said.

Musonye has called upon the governments of the four teams to fully back up their respective teams to enable them harvest results in the tournament without financial problems .

It is a warning to the entire continent that this region has waken up from slumber and we are going to Egypt to compete and not participate.

“We are the ones who started CAF and so we must be felt heavily in Africa in terms of football.Our teams must also flourish on this platform like others from other regions are doing.

“Our teams can even reach semi finals and even be champions of Africa if they put in required effort,” he added.

The Secretary General has however challenged the domestic leagues from the Cecafa region to have healthy competition so as to strengthen more the national teams despite the fact that Gor Mahia of Kenya and Simba SC of Tanzania are thriving on the continental platform .

“It is not healthy for Gor Mahia to win league year in  year out.Other teams also need to do something so as the competition may be healthy and not monotonous.”

Elsewhere ,Musonye has assured that after the Cecafa meeting in Ethiopia,it was agreed that funds will be raised by every member countries to hold both the Cecafa Senior Challenge Cup in Uganda this year in December and Cecafa Kagame Cup in Rwanda .

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Story By Godfrey Ashiali
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