Stage set for Durban U19 tournament


Phakaaathi Reporter

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Picture: Thinkstock

The fourth edition of the Durban Under-19 International Football Tournament is set to take centre stage from July 27 to August 5, following the draw conducted at Mega City Mall in Umlazi, South of Durban this week.

The teams to participate in the international tournament were announced and paired during the launch with Brazilian club Flamengo set to make their first appearance and they bring with them a rich history that includes a recent domestic Serie A title in 2009.

Some of the greatest players the world has seen have turned out for the club in the past, including Zico, Ronaldinho, Bebeto and Romario.

Spanish side Deportivo de La Coruña will also be making their debut in Durban and arrive with a proud 111-year history that saw them crowned La Liga champions in the 1999/00 season.

Portuguese giants Benfica return for the second time, the famed academy of Ivorian side ASEC Mimosas will also feature this year and it is highly likely that we will be seeing future Ivory Coast internationals on display.

Aside regulars, the South African Under-19 side, who were losing finalists in 2016, and the KwaZulu-Natal Academy, six other teams have been invited from around the world to take part in the 10-day event.

In the country, the tournament has saw the likes of Thabo Cele, who played for the KwaZulu-Natal Academy in the 2015 Durban Under-19 International Football Tournament signing for Portuguese giants Benfica, setting him on the path to a stellar professional career and is currently in South Korea with the Under-20 national team for the 2017 Fifa U20 World Cup.

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