Bucs' young star targets U20 Afcon

Thabiso Monyane
Thabiso Monyane

Orlando Pirates and Amajita winger-cum-striker Thabiso Monyane is eager to shine in the Under-20 Africa Cup of Nations, with the hope of joining his childhood friend Lyle Foster in Europe.

With Foster not in the squad after his French club Monaco decided against releasing him, Monyane and Promise Mkhuma of Mamelodi Sundowns are expected to lead Amajita's frontline when they open their Afcon campaign against hosts Niger tomorrow.

"It's motivating to see Lyle getting an opportunity to play overseas. It's my dream to follow him to Europe, especially because he's my close friend. But I know that I have to earn my stripes like he did. This Afcon is such a great platform for me," said Monyane.

"... I am positive that we will do it without him [Foster] because we have quality in the team. Every player in the team is hungry to showcase his capabilities."

Amajita are in Group A alongside Niger, Nigeria and Burundi. Group B has Senegal, Mali, Burkina Faso and Ghana.

The top two finishers in each group will represent Africa in the Fifa U20 World Cup in Poland from May 25 to June 16.

"Obviously, the ultimate objective is to go to Poland. Playing in the World Cup is every player's dream. We know we have a good chance, but we are carefully that we do not get ahead of ourselves," he said.

The lad from Tembisa on the East Rand is fast, tricky, and an excellent dribbler who has great control with the ball. He was one of a few Pirates standout performers in the MultiChoice Diski Challenge (MDC) before joining Amajita camp two weeks ago.

Amajita's group fixtures (all at 5.30pm SA time)

v Niger, tomorrow

v Nigeria, Tuesday

v Burundi, Friday (February 8)

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