Namibia misses out on chance to host Cosafa

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Namibia misses out on chance to host Cosafa

Limba Mupetami 

Namibia will not host the Cosafa Under-17 men’s championship as the opportunity has gone to Mozambique. 

Namibia had initially shown interest in hosting the tournament, with Namibia Football Association president, Robert Shimooshili saying in April, part of the prize money the Brave Warriors received for participating in the Africa Cup of Nations (Afcon) tournament will be used to rehabilitate the infrastructure.

This did not materialise, with Shimooshili telling this publication yesterday that the country’s facilities are not ready to host the tournament.

However, Namibia’s missed opportunity is Mozambique’s gain, with the FMF announcing on Friday that Cosafa had decided to award Mozambique the right to host the men’s U/17 football tournament, to take place in mid-December in the capital city of Maputo. The championship will also serve as the Afcon qualifiers for that age bracket.

“The Cosafa executive committee awarded Mozambique the hosting rights after a thorough technical inspection of the training and match venues and accommodation facilities in Maputo,” read a statement from the FMF.

“Accordingly, Cosafa has approved two playing fields, accommodation venues for all visiting delegations, including those from Cosafa and CAF organisational members, among other essential components inherent to the organisation.

“The FMF executive board expresses gratitude to Cosafa for the confidence placed in Mozambique and commits to working diligently towards the event’s success, counting on the involvement of all stakeholders, including the government, partners, and civil society.”

Earlier, FMF president Feizal Sidat said Mozambique could host a successful tournament.

“After the great achievement with the Beach Football CAN 2022, hosting an event of this size would not only put Mozambique back on the map of major CAF football events, but would also serve as a significant boost to the development of youth football in the country in light of the 2023-2027 strategic plan,” he said.

Zambia won the last U/17 championship after beating South Africa 1-0 in December 2022 at Bingu National Stadium in Malawi.

 – Additional information Cosafa