By Edward Francis Dalliah
The Gambia’s Under 20 National Football team under the leadership of coach Abdoulie Bojang booked their place in the round of sixteen of the FIFA Under 20’s World Cup competition taking place in Argentina after defeating France 2 – 1 in their second game.
Playing on Tursday 25th May 2023, the first goal was confirmed after French centre-back, Tanguy Zoukrou deflected a shot from Adama Bojang inside the penalty box resulting in an own goal in the thirteenth minute of the game, giving the Young Scorpions the lead.
As the game continued another opportunity for the Scorpions to extend the lead presented itself in the fifty-seventh minute when the referee awarded The Gambia a penalty. However, Gambian captain, Alagie Saine who plays in the Danish Superliga for AC Horsens missed his spot kick which was saved by the French Shotstopper Yann Lienard.
The France team later managed to score an equalising goal in the sixtieth minute after a Wilson Odobert strike found the back of the Young Scorpions net following an assist from Florent Sanchez. However, six minutes later the Young Scorpions took the lead after a goal from Mamin Sanyang of Bayern Munich’s second team. Harona Njie of Gunjur United provided the goal-winning assist which saw the game end 2 – 1 in favour of the Young Scorpions.
The Gambia Defeats Honduras
The Gambian Under 20 played their first game with Honduras defeating them 2 goals to 1 with both goals scored by Adama Bojang of Steve Biko FC. Scoring the opening goal for The Gambia in the competition just after the starting whistle was blown. However, an equalising goal was scored by Honduras just four minutes after the Young Scorpions celebrated their opening goal. Match winner Adama Bojang showed his supreme talent in the eighty-forth minute with his strike securing the Young Scorpions their first three points of the tournament.
Building up from the first win the Young Scorpions won their second match against the French Under 20 National Football team securing their promotion to the next round of the FIFA Under 20’s World Cup with one more game in hand.
These results mean that Young Scorpions currently lead Group F with six points, followed by South Korea in second place with four points. Third on Group F is Honduras who drew with South Kora to win only one point while France is rooted at the bottom of the group after loosing both of their matches. The Gambia still has one more game to play against South Korea while France will face off with Honduras.
According to the FIFA Under 20’s Competition Rules, if the Young Scorpions win Group F they will face 2nd place of Group E which includes Uruguay, Iraq, England and Tunisia. Currently England leads group E with six points, followed by Uruguay with three points, Tunisia (3 points) and Iraq (zero points). So if England and Uruguay win their next games then The Gambia could face South American team Uruguay in the next round of 16.