29th November, 2011
Football loving Nigerians will be glued to their television set later tonight to see if Nigeriaâ€™s U-23 team will be able to redeem the seemingly dented football image of the country as the Austin Eguavoen-led team confront their Senegalese counterparts in the second match of the Africa Olympic qualifiers in Morocco.
Eguavoen had promised Nigerians before their departure for the championship that he will pick one of the three tickets for Africa for the football event of the Olympic Games to put smiles back on the faces of Nigerians who are still downcast over the Super Eaglesâ€™ non-qualification for the Africa Cup of Nations and the Super Falcons missing the Olympic Games next year.
The U-23 Eagles started their campaign in Morocco on a shaky note with a loss to Morocco, putting the Nigerian side on a difficult terrain except they beat Senegal in the second match of the tournament tonight.
Eguavoen said his boys did not do enough to win the match but assured that they would bounce back to reckoning tonight.
The captain of the team, Obiora Nwankwo, said the players have put the defeat behind them with the hope of redeeming their image when they take on Senegal who equally need a win in the match today.
He said: â€œWe are determined to prove to Nigerians that we can play more than what we put up on Saturday when we play Senegal today. We have gone back and looked at our last game and seen what went wrong. The coaching crew have effected the necessary corrections. Weâ€™ll do Nigeria proud and improve our chances of qualifying into the semi final.â€
â€” Bamidele Olowosagba