24th May, 2010
Nigeriaâ€™s President Goodluck Jonathan has demanded the â€˜Super Eaglesâ€™ return from the World Cup in South Africa this July with the biggest prize in international football.
Jonathan, who will attend the opening ceremony onÂ 11 June when South Africa face Mexico, will also watch Nigeriaâ€™s tournament opener against Argentina on 12 June at Ellis Park Stadium in Johannesburg.
Nigeria are drawn in Group B along with Argentina, South Korea and Greece and the countryâ€™s president expects the Super Eagles to soar into the next round and on to the final.
Speaking at a special dinner to send forth the Super Eagles to the World Cup in Abuja, nigeria on Friday, Jonathan said: â€œThis is a call to national duty and I expect the Eagles to prepare well and win this trophy.
â€œThat will be a birthday gift for our country and set the stage for a golden jubilee celebration of our independence as a nation,â€ added Jonathan, who shook hands with the entire Nigeria squad led by coach Lars Lagerback.
â€œPlay, win and we will make you smile.â€
Tomorrow, the Eagles willÂ tackle Saudi Arabia in a warm-up game in Austria.
Nigeriaâ€™s biggest achievement at the World Cup so far was reaching the second round in both 1994 and 1998.
Meanwhile, Nigeriaâ€™s Sports Minister Ibrahim Bio said the team have no cause to under-perform at the World Cup as everything had been put in place to ensure their success at the Mundial.
â€œWe have received all the money meant for the team from the Federal Government, and we have no financial constraints. All these should therefore be tonic for the team to do us proud in South Africa,â€ said Bio.