The stage is set for the second edition of the Africa Beach Soccer Cup of Nations to be hosted by Nigeria next week after officials of the Confederation of African Football flew into Lagos on Thursday.
CAF Secretariat staff will set up a desk at the Eko Hotel and Suites on Friday, just as thenff.com learnt on Thursday that all participating teams are to take up their accommodation on Saturday.
The delegations of Ghana, Egypt, Cote d’Ivoire, Madagascar, Libya, Senegal and Morocco will fly into Lagos on Saturday, as the host team, Supersand Eagles, also make the short trip from their Aivoji Beach camp in Badagry to Victoria Island the same day.
Meanwhile, the Ivorian beach soccer national team on Thursday traded tackles with their Moroccan counterparts in an international friendly in both countries ahead of the second edition of Africa Beach Soccer Cup of Nations starting in Lagos next week.
Cote d’Ivoire will face hosts Nigeria, Ghana and Egypt in Group A of the six –day championship scheduled for the Eko Atlantic City, Victoria Island, 13th – 18th December 2016. Morocco will confront Cup holders Madagascar, Libya and Senegal in Group B.
Thenff.com learnt on Thursday that Moroccans have been in camp since September, and arrived in the Ivorian capital, Abidjan on Monday.
Egypt, who have been in camp since August, participated in the Samsung Invitational Tournament in Dubai before flying to Lebanon and will play the Lebanese team in a three –match series.
Ghana’s beach soccer team, which sent packing Kenya in the qualifying series, has also been in camp since August.
As part of its preparation for the championship, two –time African champions Nigeria will take on Switzerland in the COPA Lagos Invitational at the Eko Atlantic City on Sunday.
Officials of Kinetic Sports, organisers of the COPA Lagos Invitational that is being reduced to a one-day show this year as a result of the Africa Beach Soccer Cup of Nations, confirmed to thenff.com that the Swiss contingent is expected in Nigeria on Friday. Enyimba FC of Aba will take on Pepsi Academy in a curtain raiser for the Nigeria/Switzerland match on Sunday, which kicks off at 4pm.
It is an opportunity for Coach Audu Adamu Ejo to see the level of fitness and tactical awareness of his players, who have been perfecting strategies at the Aivoji Beach, Badagry for several weeks.
Players in Supersand Eagles’ camp: Goalkeepers Godwin Anyalogu (Rivers United FC), Godwin Tale (FC Lokoja), Nurudeen Mudashiru (Kada Stars) and Majid Danladi Mohammed (Kwande Academy; defenders Lukman Ibrahim (Kada Stars), Ogbonnaya Okemiri (Abia Warriors), Taiwo Adams (Owibeseb FC), Godspower Igudia (Akwa United), Victor Tale (Bassa United) and Emmanuel Owheferia (Owibeseb FC) and; forwards Bartholomew Ibenegbu (Enyimba FC), Emeka Ogbonna (Leads United), Suleiman Ogodo (FC IfeanyiUbah), Abu Azeez (Enyimba FC), Kunle Olukotun (Shooting Stars), SundayAlasco (Kada Stars), Abubakar Isah (Anambra BS), Badmus Babatunde (Owibeseb FC) and Clement Fayowole (Leads United)
Source: Nigerian Football Federation