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The Ménas of Niger aim to surprise the experts in Group E

The Nigerien domestic-based national team will be looking to avoid a second consecutive group stage exit at the 2022 African Nations Championship (CHAN) in Algeria this month but the odds are against the Ménas with a difficult Group E awaiting them. Harouna Doula’s squad will have to go through Cameroon and Republic of Congo with only one of the three teams advancing to the quarterfinals, something Niger have only accomplished once in three appearances back in 2011.

However the architect of that 2011 team is back in charge and Doula’s previous successes indicate that Niger could be a difficult opponent in Algeria. The team is currently undergoing their final preparations in Tunisia with friendly matches set up against Senegal and Mauritania before travelling to the host nation. Niger have a long wait until their first fixture against the Diables Rouges of Congo on January 20 and will be the last team to debut in Algeria.

Doula’s squad for the competition brings in players exclusively from clubs in the Nigerien capital city of Niamey, including prominent teams AS Douanes, AS GNN, ASN Nigelec, USGN, AS Police and current domestic league leaders ASFAN. CAF Online identifies USGN playmaker Boubacar Hainikoye Soumana as a key player in the squad after past experience with Niger’s senior national team and his role in USGN’s surprise run to the 2021-22 CAF Confederation Cup group stage. AS Douanes forward Issa Mossi Moussa is an experienced forward who contributed goals during Niger’s qualifying campaign and looks likely to lead the attacking line.

The full list of players are below with more on the team in the links further below.

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