Thursday Nov 09, 2017. 15:00
The Botswana national under-20 side will not be participating in the 2017 U20 COSAFA Cup.
Zambia are set to host the youth tournament which is scheduled for Kitwe between December 6-16.
The Botswana Football Association (BFA) has made a decision to take a gap year from the regional competition.
The association released the following statement:
A statement read: "Botswana Football Association National Executive (NEC) has made a decision to take a gap year from the COSAFA Under 20 championships. NEC’s position is that the Under 20 is at a level where the direction of our football should be taking a shape.
"However, NEC’s evaluation shows that recent performances do not positively define our direction. The vision of the NEC is to have an Under 20 Team that competes more than participates. The Technical Department has been tasked with using development structures to groom a team that will compete with a long term goal in mind.
"The BFA’s Strategy demands that there should be a long term plan that will see a team that should be able to compete at the 2018 Africa Zone 5 games and in the same year compete in the 2018 COSAFA under 20 championships. We believe that this same team should compete to qualify for the African and World Under 20 Championships in 2019 and ultimately qualify for the 2020 Tokyo Olympic games.
"The decision to take a gap year will help create a pool of players and prepare our self to achieve the set milestones in line with our Strategy as well as that of the Botswana National Sports Commission of 2028."