Technical Report: 2020 COSAFA U17

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FARPost Technical Study Group (TSG) had an aerial perspective and a thoughtful insight into the technical-tactical happenings at the recently concluded, 2020 COSAFA U17 Championship in Port Elizabeth.

This publication covered the tournament from the first day till the last day, and observed interesting football happenings and offerings, provided by all junior teams.

Besides the unfortunate drama provided by the 4 teams which were disqualified for failing the mandatory CAF MRI protocols, the event was successful on and off the pitch.

The Technical Report is a vital report constructed by the TSG to outline the technical, tactical and emerging trends emanating from the tournament. This piece of information is relevant in shaping current and future developments in the game. Progressive Football Associations, coaches and soccer technicians look for future pioneering strategies and plans around the game moving forward.

Thus, FARPost TSG will look briefly at the 4 teams that participated in the tournament and deliver the possible team of this championship.

A. Organisation and Logistics

COSAFA in conjunction with the Local Organising Committee and hosted by the Nelson Mandela Metropolitan Municipality, delivered a successful event.

From an administration and logistical point of view, the organizers performed well. Strict Covid-19 regulations were enforced and all upheld. Media and hospitality efficiency was obvious and all scouts attending the tournament were offered all the team information necessary.

B. Four teams

1. Malawi

The Malawi U17 started the tournament brightly and navigated a worthy early draw against the eventual winners, South Africa.

The Junior Flames’ tactical approach was flexible but dependable. They opted for a varying 1-4-4-1-1 attack formation and resorted to a deep defensive block out of possession.

Their main strength was based on the outright teamwork and tactical defensive camaraderie all the time. Malawi had challenges to withstand opponents in the second stanza and let in many unnecessary goals.

Finished Overall: 4th Position

2. Angola

Angola U17 team showed so much promise and really let themselves down. Marvelous to see in possession and how they move the ball around. The technical-tactical approach applied by the Angolans, was swift and stunning. A structured but dynamic attacking formations of 1-4-3-3 / 1-4-1-4-1 was distinctly clear from this group.

The outstanding style from their attack was an aggressive and overloading of the wide areas, where Jeremias Kossi was phenomenal.

The team’s achilles heel was their inconsistency, brittle defense and important players raising their hand when required.

Finished Overall: 3rd Position

3. Zambia

Young Chipolopolo was undoubtedly the most balanced team of this championship. They had resolute defensive application and well supplemented by a potent attack. Although they failed to win their final match, the team dazzled all before them.

Zambia U17 applied a slick and reversible 1-4-4-2/1-4-3-3 attacking style spearheaded by a lethal front 3 of Rickson Ng’ambi, Charles Mumba and Joseph Banda.

Overall, a team designed to attack at all angles and Banda confirmed this approach by netting 5 goals (the Tournament Top Goalscorer).

Over-confidence and a bad mindset leading to the finals cost the team their title. But still, expect them to make an impact at the CAF U17 showpiece.

Finished Overall: Runner-up

4. South Africa

The host country must be commended for their resolute and collaborative stance in the championship. Mixed approach characterized by high technical style and a perfect defensive mindset suitable to this group.

Amajimbos were clever in their tactical manifestations, capable of playing either 1-4-1-2-3/1-4-3-3 attacking systems depending on the occasion and the opponents. Coach Vela Khumalo proved his agile tactical understanding in the Angola game, where he unleashed the quick Keveano Francis in a more central corridor as a striker.

They will need to beef up some critical positions in the team (goalkeeping and strikers), but they have a juicy technical-tactical platform and players (Mduduzi Shabalala and Francis) to ferment their future challenges.

Finished Overall: Winners

C. 2020 COSAFA U17 Best Team

• Best XI
1. Eric Makungu (Zambia)
2. Puso Dithejane (South Africa)
3. Jeremias Kossi (Angola)
4. Miguel Chaiwa (Zambia)
5. Siya Gumede (South Africa)
6. Jorge Messias (Angola)
7. Joseph Banda (Zambia)
8. Charles Mumba (Zambia)
9. Rickson Ng’ambi (Zambia)
10. Mduduzi Shabalala (South Africa)
11. Keveano Francis (South Africa)

• Substitutes

1. Lindokuhle Nkosi (South Africa)
2. Teddy Khumalo (Zambia)
3. Ntandoyenkosi Nkosi (South Africa)
4. Julius Kumwenda (Zambia)
5. Chifundo Mphasi (Malawi)
6. Yuri David Yuri (Angola)

RELATED STORY: Shabalala and Amajimbos are big winners

By FARPost Technical Study Group

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