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Eaglets relish Egypt challenge

28 May 2014, 19:01

Abuja - The Golden Eaglets are set for their international friendly double header against Egypt at the Ahmedu Bello Stadium in Kaduna on Wednesday and on Friday.
The first-leg of the double header which kicks-off at 16h00 in Kaduna will be the Eaglets' 10th match under coach Emmanuel Amuneke, and he has tasked the players to approach the game with utmost seriousness.
"We are going to Kaduna to play Egypt and I must confess, this is our biggest test yet since we started forming this team," said Amuneke who incidentally made his name playing for Egyptian giants Zamalek SC.
"It is important for us to put up a good performance because Nigerians expect so much from this team.
"It is great to play against Egypt because I consider the country my second home. We seek improvement every day and the players have realised it."
A contingent of 25 players led by Captain Kelechi Nwakali accompanied by nine officials, travelled to Kaduna from Abuja on Tuesday to confront the Egyptians.
Defender Ayodeji Bamidele, one of the mainstays since the inception of the team, said the challenge against Egypt offers them new experience.
"We have played some matches before now including the tournament in Togo which was against teams from West Africa," Bamidele said.
"We know that Egyptians are good footballers but we are going to do our best against them in both matches."
The Egyptians in the meantime, arrived in Abuja on Monday and are already in Kaduna for the eagerly awaited international friendly matches.
Iran's struggles persist
Jonathan to visit Eagles for WC quarter-finals
Nigeria President Goodluck Jonathan will travel to the Fifa World Cup finals in Brazil once the Super Eagles earn a place in the last eight.
This was disclosed in London on Tuesday by Sports Minister, Tammy Danagogo while addressing the players at a brief post-training session at the Craven Cottage.
Also, President of Nigeria of Nigeria Football Federation, Alhaji Aminu Maigari has demanded a winning mentality from the Eagles as the countdown begins for the 20thFifa World Cup finals.
Football’s biggest showpiece opens on June 12 with Nigeria housed alongside two –time champions Argentina, debutants Bosnia-Herzegovina and Iran in Group F. but Maigari insists a winning mentality must be developed right from Wednesday’s friendly with Scotland’s Tartan Army at Craven Cottage in London.
“We must take this game by the scruff, in order to develop a ‘no prisoner’ mentality. Once you have a winning mentality, it is difficult to lose, whether in a friendly or competitive match,” Maigari said after the team’s training session at Craven Cottage on Tuesday.
Maigari contended that beating Scotland, Greece and USA in the run-in to the finals in Brazil would imbue the players with a special attitude that would be carried on to the World Cup.
“I believe in this team and what you can do at the Fifa World Cup. The opportunity beckons for you to lift the country’s name higher than ever before and I know you have the ability and the capacity to do just that.”
Danagogo praised coach Stephen Keshi and his assistants for the great job they continue to do on the African champions, and hailed the players for their patriotism and high sense of duty. All 30 players on the provisional list and technical and backroom staff were present.
Also at the post-training talk were NFF Executive Committee members Barrister Green, Muazu Suleyman, Yusuf Ahmed Fresh and Ahmad Muazu Kawu, NFF’s Assistant Director (Communications) Ademola Olajire and aides of the Honourable Minister.
- Kick Off Nigeria

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