Senegal’s U-20 national football team, the Young Teranga Lions, triumphed over their arch-rivals Gambia in the final of the 2023 TotalEnergies U-20 Africa Cup of Nations held at Cairo International Stadium.
The highly anticipated clash between the two West African nations saw Senegal secure a decisive 2-0 victory, marking their first-ever win in the competition.
The Young Teranga Lions got off to a flying start, with Sulaymane Faye scoring a powerful header just six minutes into the game.
Despite this early setback, Gambia managed to keep possession and create chances, with Mahmudu Bajo testing the Senegalese defense.
However, it was Senegal who doubled their lead in the second half, with Mamadou Camara guiding a corner into the back of the net.
Despite Gambia’s best efforts to get back into the game, they were unable to break through the Senegalese defense.
Senegal’s captain Samba Diallo came close to extending their lead on two occasions, but came out unfortunate both times despite his side emerging victorious.
This win was especially significant for Senegal, as they had previously finished as runners-up in the 2015, 2017, and 2019 editions of the tournament.
The victory also marked another triumph for Senegalese football, with the senior Teranga Lions, the Beach Soccer national team, and the home-based national team all winning continental glory in the past year.
Senegal’s midfielder Lamine Camara, was also declared as the top player of the TotalEnergies U-20 Africa Cup of Nations after his outstanding performance throughout the tournament.
Camara’s ability to create scoring opportunities and his pressing skills were crucial to his team’s success.
He was also a standout player in the TotalEnergies African Nations Championship 2022, scoring two goals in the semifinal against Tunisia.
Camara recently joined Metz FC in the French second tier, and he will be hoping to continue his excellent form with his new team.
Nigeria’s U-20 football team, were awarded the Fair Play award for their professionalism, dedication, passion and discipline, and will be among the four teams representing Africa at the upcoming FIFA U-20 World Cup in Indonesia.
The Flying Eagles, secured third place in the TotalEnergies U-20 Africa Cup of Nations by thrashing Tunisia 4-0 in Cairo.
Goals from Ibrahim Muhammad, Ahmed Abdullahi, and a brace from Jude Sunday sealed the victory for Nigeria, who bounced back strongly after their narrow 1-0 defeat to The Gambia in the semi-finals.