U-17 World Cup: Mali captain looking beyond Ghana test, wants first title

Mali skipper Seme Camara is confident his side can go past Ghana and all the way to win the U-17 World Cup for the first time.

The African champions face their Ghanaian counterparts in the quarterfinals at the Indira Gandhi Athletic Stadium on Saturday. Kickoff is 1130GMT.

Mali are looking to secure a third victory over the Black Starlets who they beat 1-0 in the Africa Cup of Nations final earlier this year and also 2-1 in a pre-World Cup test game in Abu Dhabi in September.

The Eaglets are in buoyant mood with sights on surpassing the runner-up achievement by the team at the 2015 finals in Chile.

“Mali could not cross the last hurdle two years ago but our team brought joy to Malians by winning the African championships earlier this year.

“There is no reason why we cannot make our people happy again,” said striker Seme Camara.

Mali did not have the best start in Group B. They lost to Paraguay 3-2 but won their next two matches against Turkey (3-0) and New Zealand (3-1) before thrashing Iraq 5-1 in the Group of 16.

Ghana topped Group A with wins against Colombia (1-0) and (India 4-0) sandwiched between a 1-0 defeat to USA. They also beat Niger 2-0 in the pre-quarterfinal on Wednesday.

If either Mali or Ghana go on to become champions, it will be three in a row for Africa. Nigeria had beaten Mexico 3-0 to win their maiden title in 2013 and retained it in 2015 by defeating Mali 2-0.




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