15th February, 2012
Ahead of today’s international friendly match against the Lone Star of Liberia, Nigeria’s Super Eagles, who are mainly home-based players, have been talking tough, saying it is another chance for them to prove their worth in the senior national team.
The match scheduled for the Antoinette Tubman Stadium in central Monrovia was initially planned for 15 January but was called off at the instance of Nigeria owing to the labour strike that made it difficult for the Eagles to fly out to Monrovia.
It will be Stephen Keshi’s third game as head coach of the Nigerian side, even as he presents a squad of local stars. The Eagles under Keshi are yet to lose a major game after tune-up games against Botswana and Zambia. It is a record that the players vowed to maintain in the friendly tie this evening.
One of the players, Heartland play maker, Bartholomew Ibenegbu, said the home lads are going to Liberia to make a bold statement.
“We won’t let Nigerians down in Liberia. We’re prepared for the game and will surely get victory. I feel blessed to be among the few that were selected. And we’re going to prove to Nigerians that we could be relied on to do the country proud,” he said.
Other Eagles like Kalu Uche, Emmanuel Sunday and Henry Uche assured Nigerians that nothing short of victory should be expected in the match today. The belief of the players is that they must show to Keshi what they can do for the coach to have confidence in them for future national assignments, especially in the qualifying matches for the 2013 Africa Cup of Nations.
Meanwhile, Lone Star’s Italian coach, Roberto Landi, was at the venue of the match yesterday’s evening apparently to spy on the Nigerian side during their warm up session.
P.M.Sports learnt that the Liberian coach went to chat with his Nigerian counterpart after his team rounded off their own workout as the Eagles were about to start theirs.
The Liberians, however, are leaving nothing to chance to ensure that they shoot down the Eagles in the cracker.