Comoros Islands coach Choudjay Mahandhi has named a squad of 20 players to compete at the 2020 COSAFA Women’s Championship that will be staged in South Africa’s Nelson Mandela Bay from November 3-14.
Comoros return to the competition for the second year running and will be hoping for an improved showing following a difficult debut in 2019. It is almost a completely new squad, with defender Nadia Farid midfielder Wafat Mari the few survivors from last time round.
Comoros will face Eswatini in the competition’s opening game on Tuesday, before clashes with Angola (Nov. 6) and South Africa (Nov. 9). Only the top team in each pool and the best-placed runner-up advance to semifinals.
They were also placed in a tough group last year and lost all three games, going down 17-0 to hosts South Africa in their opener. That is a record score in the competition as the eventual winners used their greater experience and physicality to ensure they claimed a big win.
Comoros also went down 5-1 to Madagascar and 13-0 to Malawi in their other pool games. It means Wafat Mari is their only scorer in COSAFA Women’s Championship matches to date.
Growth in the women’s game has been slow in the country but is picking up pace and they will be keen to showcase their quality in the regional championship.
They entered the preliminary competition for the 2015 FIFA Women’s World Cup, their first appearance, but after a 13-0 loss to powerhouse South Africa in the first leg of their qualifier, did not fulfil the return fixture.
They then did not enter the preliminaries for the 2019 World Cup and have also not entered the qualifiers for the African Women’s Championship.
Comoros Islands squad:
Goalkeepers: Rasoafara Solarisse, Mohamed Rafik Faharia
Defenders: Mouhitou Nayma, Zainaba Mahamdou Zalia, Said Aliya, Diore Said, Halima Attoumane, Nadia Farid, Asmahane Ahmed
Midfielders: Wafat Mari, Maoulida Anissa, Housseni Bibi Raissa, Charline Ould Bamba, Hayriat Abdouroihamane
Strikers: Zaharouna Haouadjadji, Mohamed Ines, Djamila Dhurari Siti, Anlaouia Hadhiroimi, Nakicha Mohamed, Roukia Mohamed