The national Under-20 (U20) men’s football team played to a 1-1 draw in their opening match at the 2021 Confederation of African Football U20 African Cup of Nations on Monday night in Mauritania.
The Young Warriors, as the team is affectionately known, made their debut at the youth competition in their Group B encounter with the Central Africa Republic (CAR).
The Namibian side dominated most of the match but failed to capitalize on the opportunities they created in the first half as most of their shots were not on target and the first half ended goalless.
In the second half, the Young Warriors continued with their dominance but it was CAR who broke the deadlock when a shot from Flory Yangao flew past the hands of goalkeeper Ngatangue Ruhaka into the back of the net.
With a goal down the Namibian boys continued to pressure their opponents and their hard work paid off in the 84th minutes when Penouua Kandjii outpaced the CAR defence to score Namibia’s equalizer.
The Young Warriors almost got a winner in the 88th minute but Edmar Kamatuka strike during a one-on-one with the CAR goalkeeper Tharance Zengba could not find the back of the net as his shot was saved.
The Namibian team’s hard work on the day was finally rewarded at the end of the match when Prince Tjiueza got the man of the match accolade for his fine performance.
The Young Warriors’ next match in the competition will be against Tunisia on 18 February 2021 while their last Group B will be against Burkina Faso on 21 February.
At the end of Group B’s opening matches, all teams collected one point from their matches which now sees CAR top of Group B while Namibia in second, Burkina Faso and Tunisia, who played to a goalless draw Monday night are third and fourth respectively.