Not many Africans have a record of birth, and in many cases, birth certificates are doctored. The football age theory is not a myth either and today's 'lads' pulling the trigger of a shot with their legs can still bypass the scan test. For now, we've seen the best of football from this age grade and its marvelous.
After a pulsating final match, Cameroon's national Under-17 male football team on Sunday won 5-3 after penalty kicks defeating their Guinean counterparts at the Africa Under-17 Nations Cup competition. Both sides drew goalless after 90 minutes of intense action at the Benjamin Mkapa National Stadium, Dar es Salaam, Tanzania.
It will be interesting to know if same Footballers are able to play competitive football in 10 years time. We've seen African Footballers who peak when we all think they are just beginning. After a while, they wither away.
Both sides drew goalless after 90 minutes of intense action at the Benjamin Mkapa National Stadium, Dar es Salaam, Tanzania. The tenacity and strength like in most of the games at the tournament would make you think you were really immature at 17 (from simple observation of young males at that age).
I once had the opportunity of learning that a younger to one of Nigeria's young talents, whose elder brother featured for the country at the Under-21 level was 26 when he served under the mandatory one year National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) for graduates. The Footballer in question (name witheld) had claimed to be 19 as at then.
At the end of a thrilling tournament, Angola finished third place after defeating the golden eaglets of Nigeria 2 - 1 at the same venue in the third-place match.
All four teams have advanced to the 2019 FIFA U-17 World Cup billed for later in the year in Brazil. Also hoping they wouldn't fizzle out when they become '25'. CAF should do more and indeed the world football ruling body FIFA to making sure we develop our young talents not only in Africa, the incidence of over-age players elsewhere around the world, if subjected to scrutiny will be shocking.
Meanwhile, let's felicitate with the young lads of Cameroon.
Header Image Credit: CGTN Africa