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The game against the Junior Eagles will take place on a synthetic pitch, the handlers of the U17 national team have moved swiftly to change the base of the team for easy

The Golden Eaglets would on Sunday relocate to Abuja from Calabar to fine-tune their preparation for the second leg of the 2013 African U-17 final round qualifier against Mali.

With confirmation that the match would hold on a synthetic pitch, the coaching crew sought the approval of Nigeria Football Federation to conclude the team's final preparations in Abuja.

Incidentally, the team had taken off from the NFF/FIFA Goal Project site in Abuja which has an artificial surface in February where the bulk of the team was selected from over 3,000 that took part in the screening exercise.
Coach Manu Garba said it's imperative to expose the players to the likely condition in Bamako so that the host would not have an undue advantage over the Nigerian youngsters.

 “Our training in Calabar in the last one week has been very good but we need to familiarize the players with the artificial surface ahead of the game in Bamako,"Garba said.
"Playing on synthetic surface is not a new thing to most of the players and we are confident they would cope well."
Meanwhile, coach Garba has enthused that Nigeria would be in a good pot when the Confederation of African Football hold the Final draws for the 2013 Orange CAF U-17 African Championship on December 9th of at the CAF headquarters in Cairo.

The tournaments would feature eight team finals with the top four teams qualifying to represent Africa at the 2013 FIFA U-17 World Cup in UAE.

“By the grace of God, we shall be at both the African tournament and World Cup as a result we are leaving no stone unturned to ensure our qualification," Garba noted.

The Golden Eaglets won the first leg 2-0.





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