The 1-0 victory over Libya is indeed a good motivation for the Nigerian CHAN Eagles at the ongoing African Nations Championship in Morocco.
Sunday Faleye’s 79 minutes strike secured maximum points for Coach Salisu Yusuf’s men who were in need of a victory.
Before the match, Libya had beaten Equatorial Guinea in their first game which puts them atop the group while Nigeria and Rwanda played out a goalless affair. The Eagles were indeed in need of a victory to buy a life line in the tournament.
Against Libya, the Eagles played safe with the defense line marshalled by Orji and Stephen Eze with the latter emerging Man of the Match. Goalkeeper Ezenwa was almost on holidays as he was no much of threat from the opponents. The team can go ahead and celebrate the victory, it was hard-earned. Meanwhile, some section of analyst back home have criticized Salisu Yusuf’s men for not playing enterprising football but, it is also fair to applaud the side for ensuring they were not disgraced had they lost to Libya.
In their previous match against Rwanda, the Eagles had a couple of chances but were denied by the woodwork and the up right but were unlucky to have played out a draw.
Equatorial Guinea Coach Rodolfo Diaz Bodipo at post match after losing 0-1 to Rwanda expressed that he expects his side to try and get something off their final group game against Nigeria. “The objective is for us to compete,” he said. “We want to gain experience playing against big teams, we will improve against Nigeria and go for the match as we did against Rwanda.”
Did he say improve against Nigeria? Well, he that is down fears no fall. Trying to upset Nigeria would mean to cause a little stir in the group which may end up being inconsequential to the Eagles chances of progressing.
Just like Libya, the Eagles are expected to show maximum dominance as they have always did in their matches. Beating the Guineans may not be much of a problem but complacency must be avoided as the match would prove the team’s readiness for the next phase. Salisu Yusuf’s men have shown that they can compete against big teams, burst forward with the likes of Sunday Faleye, Ibrahim Mustapha and Emeka Ogbugh coming to the party in grand style. The team has also displayed defensive competence as they are yet to concede a goal after two matches.