Johannesburg - South African Under-20 (Amajita) coach Thabo Senong has given his squad his stamp of approval ahead of the Caf African Youth championships next month.
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“I am very happy with this team. As I have always said, we are going to Senegal to compete and probably go all the way," Senong said in a statement by the SA Football Association on Tuesday.
"When one enters into a competition, the primary objective is to go all the way."
The tournament will be hosted by Senegal from March 8-22.
The squad is made up of three goalkeepers, seven defenders, six midfielders and five strikers, made up of a mixture of players plying their trade in the Premier Soccer League, the National First Division and a handful of overseas-based clubs.
“We have done a lot of preparation here at home and will fine-tune everything in Senegal where we have lined up two matches against the hosts," Senong said. "That should be enough."
Senong will be assisted by David Notoane and Wendell Robinson, who is also the goalkeeper coach.
Amajita are in Group B together with Ghana, Mali and Zambia.
Group A is made up of Senegal, Nigeria, Congo and Ivory Coast.
The two top teams from each group will automatically qualify for the World Cup in New Zealand.
Amajita will bid to become the third national age-group to successfully qualify for a major tournament this year, after Bafana Bafana were represented at the Africa Cup of Nations and the Under-17s qualified for the Under-17 World Cup in Chile.
“The young boys have paved the way for us to emulate them. Their mission was Road to Chile," Senong said.
"Ours is Road to New Zealand. We are in a tough group but we are relishing the challenge."