Due to the opening festival which took for several hours, the opening ceremony was held on Friday a ceremonial and the first ball kick made by the deputy prime minister Mahdi Mohamed Guled, but playing matches officially kicked off on Friday.
Key government officials including ministers, lawmakers, Mayor of Mogadishu, and as well as Somali Football Federation vice presidents Ali Abdi Mohamed and Abdullahi Shekh Nor attended the opening festival.
SFF senior vice president Ali Abdi Mohamed, said in his address that his federation gives a particular consideration to youth competitions. "For us youth events are more prioritized, as we benefit them to produce talented youthful footballers” the senior vice president said during his address at the official opening festival.
"Our youth teams; the Ocean stars youngsters and Ocean stars juniors are remembered for their high profile performances in the recent CECAFA U-15 championship in Asmara and as well as in the 2017 edition of CECAFA U-17 in Burundi. We are fully committed to increasing youth engagements in our game” SFF senior vice president Ali Abdi Mohamed, added.
On her side, Somali minister for youth and sports Hon. Khadija Mohamed Diriye, commended SFF for its continued efforts of developing Somali football adding that creating more opportunities for young people was much appreciated. The minister also thanked the office of Banadir region’s governor for sponsoring this big youth football event.
Deputy Prime minister Mahdi Mohamed Guled added that in recent years he witnessed a tangible football progress in Somalia. "On behalf of the government, we declare that Somali football federation has done a very remarkable job” the deputy prime minister said before he was invited to kick the first ball as an inauguration for the tournament.
The first day of the tournament has been a day of a stalemate as the two matches on the opening day ended in draw. Howl-wadaag faced Warta Nabadda in match number one which ended in 2-2, while the second match of the competition Shangaani VS Kaxda also ended in a goalless standoff. On Saturday Hodan defeated Abdilaziz 3-2, while Dharkeynley destroyed Dayniile 2-0 in the same day. On Sunday there will be played two matches according to the fixtures of the tournament. Yaaqshiid will take on Boondheere, as Shibis will fight Kaaraan.
Somali Football Federation Media Department