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Wounded Golden Eaglets eye victory against Ghana


Golden Eaglets coach Fatai Amoo giving instructions to the players at training. It’s Nigeria versus Ghana today in Lome, Togo. Photo:

• Nigerians Don’t Want To Know About Tactics, Pinnick Tells Players

• His Visit Has Boosted Our Morale, Says Official

After losing their first match to the Baby Elephants of Cote d’Ivoire at the on-going West African Football Union (WAFU) B tournament in Lome, Togo on Wednesday, the Golden Eaglets of Nigeria know the importance of their match against Ghana Black Starlets today.

The encounter billed for Lome’s Stade Municipal, holds a lot for Nigeria’s survival in the tournament. Group B has only three teams, and each team will play only two matches. The defeat to Cote d’Ivoire has put Nigeria’s qualification in great danger, but the Golden Eaglets and their officials believe anything can still happen in the group.

The players have vowed to get the three available points in today’s game to avoid elimination.

An official of the team told The Guardian in a telephone conversation yesterday that the players had put behind the defeat to Cote d’Ivoire and are looking forward to the game against Ghana Black Starlets.

“A majority of the players refused to eat after the defeat to Cote d’Ivoire on Wednesday. We felt it too, but everything is okay now.

The players are eagerly waiting for the match against Ghana on Saturday (today), and our plan is to score as many goals as possible.

We are hoping that Ghana should beat Cote d’Ivoire in their last game. Don’t forget that Ghana eliminated our Flying Eagles from the WAFU tournament in Port Novo, Benin Republic last month. It won’t be good for the same Ghana to defeat us here in Togo. Many Nigerians won’t forgive us. The visit by the NFF president has boosted our morale,” the official stated.

To lift the spirit of the Golden Eaglets ahead of today’s all-important match against Ghana Black Starlets, NFF President, Amaju Pinnick visited the team’s camp at the Hotel Novella Star in Lome, Togo, on Thursday, where he charged boys to show robust winning mentality against their opponents.

Pinnick charged the players to believe in themselves and go for victory, just as urged the players to remain focused.

He said: “Nigerians don’t want to know about tactics, just go, play and win the game. The mentality of Nigerians is winning, they don’t care how you win, just win. Winning gives Nigerians a lot of joy.

“So, I just want to crave your indulgence to represent Nigeria well. I can see that we have the youngest team in this tournament, which of course, I’m very proud of. It is a developmental football at this level. It does not mean that we do not want to win.

Nigerians wants you to win so that you will be celebrated. We want you to be celebrated, it is very important that we must win. Just work hard and ensure we beat Ghana. The attitude we always display is that we can do it. That is the spirit under my leadership in the Nigeria Football Federation and that is what we expect from you.”

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