Cote d’Ivoire battered 5-1 last Thursday by Golden Eaglets of Nigeria and thus confined to the bottom of Group B of CAF U-17 qualifiers in Niamey did the unthinkable on Sunday.
They inflicted deadly blows on hitherto Matchday 1 leaders, Burkina Faso, pummelling them 3-0 to send the Burkinabes out. All the teams thus finished on three points, leaving Nigeria as group leaders on account of massive goal difference.
The Golden Eaglets will thus face second placed Niger Republic in Group A in Niamey on Wednesday. Cote d’Ivoire who are second placed in Group B will face Group A winners, Ghana on the same day in Niamey.
The Nigeria-Niger match is dicey. Even though technically, Nigeria as Group leaders are presumed the home match, but in reality, it is Niger Republic that are at home in Niamey.
A similar clash two years ago on the same soil saw Nigeria out of the continental qualifications and thus could not defend the World Cup won in 2015.
The winners of the two semi-finals will compete on Saturday for the West African slot at Tanzania 2019 African Cup.