August 11, 2017 By Sahr Morris Jnr
Sierra Leone national U-17 women team will face West African opponent, The Gambia in a renew rivalry for the FIFA U-17 Women’s World Cup Uruguay 2018.
Both nations will open their qualifying campaign in the preliminary round with Sierra Leone hosting the Gambians in Freetown on 14 October for the first leg before traveling to Banjul a week later for the return leg tie.
Reacting to the draw, the Sierra Leone Football Association (SLFA) director of competition, Sorie Ibrahim Sesay, said it is a good draw, hence they were looking forward to selecting players from the Ladies Cup which will kick-off in the respective regions.
For the Gambia Women’s Football Coordinator, Sainey Sissoho, he told Gambian media outlets: “It’s a good draw! Again we are aiming to qualify for the World Cup. I think this time we have seen more talented players than the team that went to Azerbaijan in 2012. And we have confidence in these players that they can take the country again to another level.”
Already, Mariama Sowe who is the head coach of the Scorpions National Women’s Team, has been assigned to lead the team into the qualifiers and will be assisted by Foday Bah of Wallidan Football Club, while the SLFA are yet to name their technical team.
The qualifier has been designed in three folds and in a round robin format for a place into the World Youth Championship showpiece, which will be held in Uruguay in 2018.
The winner from the double header between Sierra Leone and Gambia will face Ghana in the second round in December before the third and decisive round qualifier in February 2018 against the winner between Tunisia and Djibouti or Libya.
This will mark the second meeting between Sierra Leone and Gambia. The last time they faced each other was in 2012 when The Gambia secured a 3-1 victory in Freetown and went on to win the return leg again 3-0 in Banjul.