Nigeria handed tough draw in Africa Olympic tournament

Austin Eguavoen
Eguavoen admits Nigeria are in a tough group for the U23 qualifying tournament

Nigeria have been drawn against Senegal for the final Olympic men's qualifying tournament for Africa in November.

The Dream Team will compete in Group B against north African giants Morocco and Algeria.

Hosts Egypt were assigned to Group A with South Africa, Gabon and Ivory Coast after Saturday's draw in Cairo.

The top three nations at the tournament in Egypt will qualify for the 2012 Olympics in London.

The fourth-placed side faces a play-off against an Asian side.

Nigeria were the first African side to win gold at the Olympics in 1996 and their coach Austin Eguavoen admits but they face a tough task to qualify for the 2012 event.

"The draw is interesting. Like I have always said there are no minnows in African football," Eguavoen told BBC Sport on Saturday.

"This is only a pointer that we should begin preparations in earnest. It would also give us a direction on the choice of Africa friendly matches to pursue.

"But honestly it's an interesting draw."

The top two teams in each group will advance to the semi finals before Africa's representatives for the tournament are known.

The eight-nation event, which is also the African Under-23 Championship, kicks off in Egypt on 26 November.

Cameroon are the other African side to have won gold at the Olympics and they achieved their feat in Sydney in 2000.

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