Super Eagles coach Gernot Rohr has reacted to Tuesday’s Africa Cup of Nations draw which pitched Nigeria against Egypt, Sudan, and Guinea Bissau in Group D of the tournament.
Rohr was one of the dignitaries in Yaounde, Cameroon, to witness Tuesday’s draw ceremony, and he admitted it was not an easy pairing. But he was quick to reiterate his belief in the Super Eagles’ potential to pull through.
“The first game is very important; Nigeria-Egypt, it’s a very good game and we would see, we have to finish top two in the group to go into last 16, it’s not an easy group but we are very confident,” Rohr told journalists in Yaounde.
While Rohr is confident about the Super Eagles’ chances, he is already mapping out a sound programme to adequately prepare the three-time African champions.
He said: “We will have at least one or two friendlies before the competition, we will start our campaign on the 11th (January). It’s the third day of the tournament so we have a bit more time but we have to be in Cameroon on the 6th – five days before the competition.
“We will be here not for friendly but to prepare and adapt to the different climate in case it gets very hot and humid in Garoua. So I think we will be okay, we will see the stadium tomorrow (Wednesday) I am sure we would have a good atmosphere, the city loves football.”
After confronting the Pharaohs on January 11, the Super Eagles will face Sudan four days later before rounding off their campaign in the group stage with their third game against Guinea Bissau on Wednesday, January 19.
Egypt is the most successful country in the history of the Africa Cup of Nations, with seven AFCON titles in their kitty.
However, despite the outstanding success, Nigeria has the upper hand in terms of the head-to-head record in past games against the North Africans at previous AFCON tournaments
In the 10 AFCON meetings between Nigeria and Egypt, the North Africans have just three wins, the Eagles have four while the remaining games ended in draws.
The Super Eagles will be on the hunt for a fourth AFCON title in Cameroon, having won their three titles in 1980, 1994, and 2013.
Winning the AFCON was one of the clauses inserted into the current contract of Gernot Rohr.
Group A: Cameroon, Burkina Faso, Ethiopia, Cape Verde
Group B: Senegal, Zimbabwe Guinea, Malawi,
Group C: Morocco, Ghana, Comoros Gabon,
Group D: Nigeria, Egypt, Sudan, Guinea Bissau
Group E: Algeria Seirra Leonne, Equatorial Guinea, Cote d Ivoire
Group F: Tunisia Mali, Mauritania, Gambia
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