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U-20 AFCON: Benin coach Mattias reveals his aim

Mattias Deguenon says his team’s objective at the TotalEnergies U-20 Africa Cup of Nations is to qualify for the FIFA World Cup in Indonesia.

The trainer made these comments ahead of their Group C opener against Zambia in Alexandria on Tuesday.

The West Africans return to the tournament after a long absence and Deguenon feels at home in Egypt.

The Cheetahs will be hoping to replicate their 2005 performance when they beat Morocco on penalties to secure bronze on home soil.

“We came here (Egypt) in November, we prepared against the Pharaohs,” Deguenon said. “We are in a good hotel, the reception conditions are there.”

“Our goal is to finish in the last four of the tournament. We want to qualify for the World Cup.”

Benin played at the 2005 FIFA U-20 World Cup and they want a repeat appearance in this year’s competition to be played in Indonesia.

“It would be a moral satisfaction for its young people who must show themselves to the world. We are working hard for that.

“We want to go step by step to achieve our goals”.

The tactician says coaching the national team is an honour and a privilege.

“It is a personal satisfaction to be in this position, to defend the country and to put young players in the best possible position to win.”

Captain Ouorou Tamimou says the TotalEnergies U-20 Africa Cup of Nations is the platform for young players to be seen.

“Like all players, I want to make myself visible in this competition,” Ouorou said.

“We are in the process of building and each player will play their part. We want to qualify for the World Cup.”

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