The future of African football is secured if all countries under the affiliate of the Confederation of African Football (Caf) abide by the dictates of the Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) test on its budding talents.
This much is the opinion of Diamond Zebras' coach, Kagiso Kobedi who noted that the application of the MRI Test from the qualifying stages of the 2013 CAF African Under-17 Championship has reduced drastically the scourge of age cheating.
“The use of the MRI test is a positive development for African football,” said Kagiso who made history by qualifying the Diamond Zebras for only their third U-17 tournament after disposing off Malawi, Rwanda and Algeria. “ In four years, time we would begin to see the positive results of using very young players at this level and I want to commend Caf.”
In a related development, Kobedi who is guiding his young guns on a tour of West Africa has rated the Golden Eaglets over the Junior Elephants -Nigeria is drawn along with Cote d’Ivoire, Ghana and Congo for the championship in Morocco.
The Diamond Zebras lost to the Junior Elephants in two friendly matches (7-2 on aggregate) en route to Calabar but Kobedi noted that the Golden Eaglets who beat his wards 3-0 on Saturday are a better side.
“This tour of West Africa and playing against Cote d’Ivoire, Nigeria is very important for the development of our players but I must confess that Nigeria is a very strong team, “he said.
“This is an eye opener to our boys and losing would make them work harder. Technically, I think Nigeria is better than Cote d’Ivoire; we also played against them before coming to Calabar.
“While the Nigerian boys play the ball around much better, very skilful and they play with speed, the Ivoirians are slow but very physical. So, I think the Nigerians are better, “he noted.