Ivorian Coach Tips Nigeria For Group Ticket

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Ivory Coast coach, Sabri Lamouchi believes Nigeria’s Super Eagles will overcome the recent setback of a 1-1 draw at home to Kenya and qualify for the 2014 FIFA World Cup in Brazil.

The African champions failed to sparkle on Saturday, requiring a stoppage time goal from substitute, Nnamdi Oduamadi to snatch a draw against the Harambee Stars in Calabar but Lamouchi will be surprised if the Eagles fail to fly to Brazil.

“Of course my team, the Ivory Coast, one or two from North Africa, Nigeria and probably Zambia (are the five teams) that will qualify to represent Africa at the 2014 FIFA World Cup in Brazil,” Lamouchi told supersport.com on Monday.

Nigeria knocked out the Ivory Coast at the quarterfinals of the 2013 AFCON in South Africa and Lamouchi has now confessed that he did not believe the Super Eagles would progress to the last four of the competition at the expense of his star-studded side.

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“No, (I did) not really (expect them to knock us out), but in this kind of big tournament you can never tell. I was however surprised how they played against us.

“They were superb, had a stronger fighting spirit and pace than us. And after their win over us I tipped them to lift the trophy.

“But look, to tell you how funny football is, Kenya almost defeated the Super Eagles days ago in the 2014 World Cup qualifier at home. If Nigeria had lost would you say Stephen Keshi is no longer a good coach?” he queried rhetorically.