CHAN Eagles get early opportunity to avenge 1-4 defeat by Togo
Nigeria’s home-based senior players have been offered a quick opportunity to show that their 1-4 defeat by Togo in the African Nations Championship (CHAN) qualifiers was a fluke when they meet the Sparrow Hawks in their opening game of the 2019 WAFU-FOX Cup of Nations on Sunday.
Togo defeated Nigeria 4-1 in the CHAN qualifier in Lome at the weekend. The return will hold at the Stephen Keshi Stadium Asaba in a fortnight, but before then, the WAFU-FOX Championship has given the CHAN Eagles the opportunity to show they are better than the team than the one that played in Lome.
The Nigerians have arrived in Dakar, capital of Senegal for the second WAFU-FOX Cup of Nations starting in the Senegalese city of Thies tomorrow.
A team of 21 players and six officials flew by Air Cote d’Ivoire early yesterday from Abuja to Abidjan, and then connected the Senegalese capital by the same airline.
The updated fixtures show that Nigeria, silver medallists at the inaugural edition staged in Cape Coast, Ghana two years ago, will tango with the Sparrow Hawks of Togo in their first match of the competition at the Stade Lat Dior Thies on Sunday.
It is an opportunity come quickly for the Eagles to avenge their 4-1 lashing by the Hawks in a 2020 African Nations Championship qualifying match in Lome last Sunday.
Victory over the Sparrows in the first elimination round will take the Eagles to the second phase, before the semifinals and the final. The tournament ends on October 13.
All 16 participating teams will partake in the first elimination round, with host nation Senegal up against Guinea Bissau, Burkina Faso against Mauritania, Cote d’Ivoire against Cape Verde and Guinea against Benin Republic.
Sierra Leone, drafted in to replace Morocco that executed a late withdrawal, will be up against Liberia, while Mali takes on Niger Republic and Gambia will tackle Ghana.
In the Nigerian team to Senegal are goalkeepers Adamu Abubakar (Wikki Tourists); Galadima Mohammed (Nasarawa United); and Theophilus Afelokhai (Enyimba FC), while the defenders are Olisa Ndah (Remo Stars); Stephen Manyo (Enyimba FC); Udochukwu Anumudu (Lobi Stars); Okon Nya (Akwa United); Ebube Duru (Lobi Stars); Etboy Akpan (Akwa United); and John Lazarus (Lobi Stars);
The midfielders are Sikiru Alimi (Lobi Stars); Fatai Gbadamosi (Shooting Stars); Williams Ukeme (Wikki Tourists); Ndifreke Effiong (Akwa United); Chisom Orji (Collin Edwin Academy); Olatunji Oluwadamilare (Enyimba FC) and Samuel Matthias (Akwa United), Nigeria’s lone goal scorer in the 1-4 defeat by Togo in Lome, Sunusi Ibrahim of Nasarawa United is joined by Seth Mayi (Remo Stars); Tosin Omoyele (Plateau United); and Mfon Udoh (Akwa United) in the forward line.