The 2018 COSAFA Under-20 Championships is to again be staged in Kitwe, Zambia from December 2-14 as the top young talent in the region gathers to showcase their potential.
After the successful hosting of the championships last year, Zambia will again welcome the competing teams and look to regain the title they gave up to eventual champions South Africa in 2017.
Here are some numbers around the competition that has a rich 35-year history.
0 – The only final to finish goalless was in 2001 when Zambia needed a penalty shoot-out to beat Angola 5-3 on spot-kicks. That remains the only final to go to a shoot-out.
1 – COSAFA associate member Reunion will take part in their first ever regional event at any age-group level!
1 – South Africa were the top side in 2017 as they defeated Lesotho 2-1 in the final.2 – Both guest nations in last year’s COSAFA Under-20 Championships made the semi-finals, but lost at that stage. Egypt eventually beat Uganda to the bronze medal with a 3-1 victory in the third-place play-off.
3 – Zambia have won three of the last five COSAFA Under-20 Championships played, with only South Africa breaking their run in 2013 and 2017.
3 – Angola lost three finals in a row between 2000 and 2002. They made the deciding match in 2011 but lost again. They have yet to win the regional title and went out in the first round in 2017.
4 – Only four nations have won the COSAFA Under-20 Championships – Zambia (11 times), Zimbabwe (6), South Africa (6) and Madagascar (1).
4 – Muhammad Shaban of East African guest nation Uganda finished top-scorer at the 2017 COSAFA Under-20 Championships
4 – Zambia hold the record for the most title wins in a row, four, between 1993 and 1999.
6 – This year’s COSAFA Under-20 Championships will kick-off on December 2, with the final to be staged 12 days later on the 14th.
9 – The most number of goals scored in a single final – South Africa defeated Zambia 5-4 in 2004!
11 – The number of titles won by Zambia, the most successful nation in the history of the COSAFA Under-20 Championships.
11 – The number of years in a row that South Africa hosted the event between 1999 and 2009.
12 – The number of teams who are likely to compete in this year’s COSAFA Under-20 Championships.
22 – The number of matches that will be played at this year’s COSAFA Under-20 Championships.
39 – The number of goals scored in the 2017 COSAFA Under-20 Championships!
1983 – The first time a regional competition was staged for junior teams. It was won by Zambia.
2000 – The first time a nation other than Zambia or Zimbabwe lifted the trophy – South Africa claimed the prize in 2000.
2005 – Madagascar became just the fourth country to lift the trophy after Zambia, Zimbabwe and South Africa.