Super Eagles’ head coach, Gernot Rohr and team captain, Ahmed Musa have described Nigeria’s African Cup of Nations (AFCON) group B pairing as a ‘tough one’, insisting that the team must be at its best to get out of it.
Nigeria was drawn in group B with Guinea, Madagascar and Burundi for the tournament holding in Egypt between 21 June – 19 July 2019.
“It is a tough group and we have to be at our best and our fittest. Guinea has a young, tough team and we will have to be at our best against them. Burundi eliminated Gabon even with their Pierre Aubameyang. Madagascar was the first team to qualify. It would be a great showpiece of football, but it is important for our players to avoid injuries as the season heads towards the end.”
Also, Super Eagles’ captain Ahmed Musa said: “I think it is a tough group for the Super Eagles. It is important for us to stay fit and avoid injuries so that everyone would be in great shape in Egypt. We have a young team who have played at the World Cup but have not played at the AFCON. For me, we are ready for any country in Egypt. It would be an interesting experience.”
Rohr revealed that plans are in place for the team’s preparation with friendly games against “Ghana (in Nigeria), and maybe Senegal.”
The two top –placed teams in each group, as well as the best third –placed teams from four out of the six groups, will qualify for the knock-out rounds.
Nigeria will play its group games in Alexandria with fixtures against Burundi on June 22 (7pm), Guinea on June 26 (4.30pm) and Madagascar on June 30 (6pm).
GROUP A: Egypt, DR Congo, Uganda, Zimbabwe
GROUP B: Nigeria, Guinea, Madagascar, Burundi
GROUP C: Senegal, Algeria, Kenya, Tanzania
GROUP D: Morocco, Cote d’Ivoire, South Africa, Namibia
GROUP E: Tunisia, Mali, Mauritania, Angola
GROUP F: Cameroon, Ghana, Benin Republic, Guinea Bissau
Coach Gernot Rohr on #AFCON2019Draw.
“Group B will be tough. Guinea 🇬🇳, Madagascar 🇲🇬 and Burundi 🇧🇮 are decent sides so we have to prepare well. We plan to play build up games vs Ghana(in Nigeria), and maybe Senegal.”#SoarSuperEagles #Team9jaStrong.
— 🇳🇬 Super Eagles (@NGSuperEagles) April 12, 2019