Saintfiet: "Gambia can be competitive in Group F"

Saintfiet Gambia

Gambia coach Tom Saintfiet says his Scorpions will be competitive at next year's TotalEnergies Africa Cup of Nations, Cameroon 2021.

The Gambia who will be making their first ever appearance at the prestigious tournament were placed in Group F following draw for the finals held in Yaounde on Tuesday 17 August 2021.

The Scorpions were drawn against former champions Tunisia and CAF Zone West A rivals Mali and Mauritania.

"I think we can be satisfied with this draw and for sure we can be competitive in this group," the Belgian coach told CAFOnline.com.

group F Afcon

Saintfiet's team will be based in the city of Limbe alongside their group opponents. The former Togo and Namibia coach said the draw merged his pre-draw expectations.

"Before the draw I had some dream draws and I think draw has come close to it.

"We cannot underestimate any team because in the AFCON every country is a good strong country.

"Every team that qualified has quality but playing Tunisia is not bad - also Mauritania and Mali neighboring countries in West Africa.” added Saintfiet.

The Gambia made history in March this year when they booked their place at the continent's flagship tournament. They surprised their higher ranked opponents Gabon, DR Congo and Angola to top the group with 10 points.

Gambia Celebrating

“It was an exciting draw and I was so happy to see my country drawn in the TotalEnergies Africa Cup of Nations for the first time,” said Scorpions forward Assan Ceesay.

“It’s a fair draw but we need to prepare very well because it will not be easy. We’re all looking forward to the tournament.”

The Scorpions as the Gambian team is nicknamed will open their account on Wednesday, 12 August 2022 at the Limbe Omnisport Stadium before taking on Mali and Tunisia respectively.