A profile of 2018 COSAFA Under-17 Championship hopefuls Lesotho as they take part in the regional competition in Mauritius from July 19-29 having missed the last two editions.
COSAFA Under-17 Championship wins (0): None
Last years’ finish: Did not enter
African Under-17 Championship appearances (0): None
FIFA Under-17 World Cup appearances (0): None
2018 COSAFA Under-17 Championship fixtures:
20/07: vs South Africa – 15h30 – Auguste Vollaire Stadium
22/07: vs Zambia – 15h00 – Auguste Vollaire Stadium
24/07: vs Mozambique – 15h00 – Auguste Vollaire Stadium
Lesotho have not competed in the previous two COSAFA Under-17 Championships played in Mauritius but make a welcome return to the field as they gun for success in this age-group and potentially a place at the African Under-17 Championships next year.
The country has enjoyed some success at Under-20 level, making the continental finals, making the quarterfinals in 1989, and then appearing two more times in the group stages in 2005 and 2011.
But in the youngest age category they have not enjoyed the same fortunes and will be hoping for a first ever appearance in the showpiece event in Tanzania next year.
But to get there they must come through a difficult first round pool in Mauritius that also includes defending champions Zambia, regional powerhouse South Africa and an always competitive Mozambique team.
It is a daunting task for the team, but also a chance to show that their new crop of young stars hold out much promise for the senior national team in the future.
Lesotho have enjoyed good success at full international level, finishing third in the recent COSAFA Cup played in South Africa, while they also made the semifinals in 2017 and 2013.
The country has a rich football tradition and for their population size, often find a way to punch above their weight.