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Nigeria, Angola clash in high stakes AFCON quarter final

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Nigeria
Nigeria's Ademola Lookman and Alex Iwobi embrace after the final whistle. PHOTO/CAF
  • Nigeria have not won the AFCON title in 10 years
  • They are seen as favorites for the title
  • Angola seeking to win for their people

Nigeria head coach Jose Peseiro has asked his charges to exercise great caution as they take on Angola in a potentially explosive Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) quarter final duel in Abidjan.

The Nigeria tactician, who looks to guide the Super Eagles to their first AFCON title since 2013, when they won with the late Stephen Keshi, says they will go into the match not thinking about the favorites tag, but getting the job done.

“It will be a tough match. We will bring commitment and sacrifice to try to overcome this great team. Angola is not a big name in Africa, but they play very well. They are not here by luck; they have shown a lot of capability to reach the quarter-finals,” noted the tactician.

Peseiro says to beat Angola, they need to find a nice balance between defense and offence, and reiterates they will give their best in terms of focus and concentration.

“We watched their videos and we know it will be a tough match. They won the last match with a large score, and we also defend well. We will give everything on the field to reach the semi-finals,” Iwobi says.

Nigeria has respect for Angola

Nigeria

Nigeria players celebrate a past goal.

He adds; “We have to respect Angola a lot. If they are at this stage of the competition, it means they are a great team. We need the entire team to defend. It won’t be easy because it’s a team that scores a lot.”

Nigeria’s best performance since winning the 2013 crown was in Egypt in 2019, when they were eliminated in the semis but won the bronze medal match.

Meanwhile, Angola’s head coach Pedro Goncalves says the team will battle to show their worth when they play the quarter final duel.

The tactician believes they will be going into the match as possible underdogs, but has reiterated they are pushed on by the desire to make history for their nation.

“This match means a lot for our team and for the entire Angolan nation, which has dreamed for years of seeing the team at this stage of the competition. We will face Nigeria, a great nation in African football. This match is an opportunity to show our worth,” the tactician said, speaking ahead of the game.

Given our all to reach here

Angola

Angola’s head coach Pedro Goncalves. PHOTO/CAF

He adds; “We have worked and given our all to reach this level of the competition. I congratulate my team, which has always been dedicated. The match is an opportunity to show that we have evolved.”

Meanwhile, the coach has paid glowing tribute to the Nigerian side and their technical bench for how they have performed so far in the competition.

Meanwhile midfielder Manuel Cafumana says the team knows the task ahead of them, and are going in to ensure they represent their country well.

“I am proud of what we have accomplished since the beginning and especially the pride that we currently represent for our country. We will fight against Nigeria as we did in the first four matches. We will play as usual,” said the Israel based player.

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