Nigerian team will pay against the Lone Stars of Liberia on Saturday.
Nigeria’s national football team, the Super Eagles, are scheduled to depart the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja, Friday morning, aboard a chartered flight scheduled to arrive Monrovia two hours later.
The squad will consist of 22 players and officials of the team who will be joined by NFF officials and those of the Nigerian Football Supporters Club, led by Rauf Oladipo.
Gunning for a place at next year’s Africa Nations Cup to be hosted by South Africa, the Eagles will have to cross the hurdle posed by the Lone Stars of Liberia to make a much awaited return to Africa’s biggest football tournament, after sadly missing out from the last edition jointly hosted by Equatorial Guinea and Gabon earlier this year.
Nigeria will be facing Liberia in Saturday’s Nations Cup qualifier under the floodlight as the match is scheduled for a 18:00 (7pm Nigerian time) kick off.
PREMIUM TIMES reports that the floodlights of the Samuel Doe National Stadium in Monrovia are being put to test daily in readiness for the late kick off time.
The Liberians have equally stepped up the campaign to make sure that they get a win over the Super Eagles on Saturday.
Liberian President, Elen Sirleaf-Johnson and four cabinet ministers -Education, Information, Social and Culture, and Sports -are at the forefront of the campaign to beat Nigeria to the Nations Cup ticket
Meanwhile, Super Eagles deputy skipper, Vincent Enyeama, who arrived camp on Wednesday was subjected to special drilling by national team’s goalies’ trainer, Ike Shorunmi, even as it was clear from his output that Enyeama is in the best frame of form.
“It’s just routine and we know his form and we are sure he will be ready for the game against Liberia if needed”, Ike said.
Enyeama played at the weekend and assured after the over two hours training at the National Stadium in Abuja, that he was happy for the one day extra granted him by Head Coach Stephen Keshi, promising to reward that with excellent performance if fielded on Saturday.
GEJs visit motivates us
Super Eagles skipper, Joseph Yobo, declared on Thursday that Wednesday’s surprise visit by President Goodluck Jonathan, to the training session of the national team at the Abuja National Stadium, was the tonic the team needs to excel in the game against Liberia on Saturday.
Yobo said rather than the visit putting pressure on the team, it has helped to motivate all the players, some of whom have never had the opportunity of meeting the President or any president for that matter in their entire football career.
“We are privileged to have had the rare opportunity of meeting the president and I must specially thank him for the visit and also assure him of the seriousness of the entire squad to excel in not only the qualifiers for the Nations Cup but those of the World Cup and any tournament that we will enter for,” he said.
Yobo also thanked Vice President Namadi Sambo, the Governor of his home state, Rivers, Rotimi Amaechi, and all those who were there when the President visited the national team.
“Mr. President knew almost all the players by name and that means he has been following the team closely. We can only reward [him] by qualifying in style for the SA 2013 Nations Cup and doing very well at the tournament proper,” he said.