Lakhdar Belloumi tips Algeria to beat Eagles in Uyo
Beating Nigeria in Uyo is a task Algeria can accomplish if they played to their strength, former international super star, Lakhdar Belloumi, has said.
Nigeria will host Algeria in a 2018 Fifa World Cup qualifier in Uyo on November 12.
The 57-year-old draws confidence from their feat of 35 years ago when Les Fennecs stunned Nigeria 2-1 in Lagos in 1981 en route to qualifying for the 1982 Fifa World Cup finals in Spain, reports supersport.com.
“Algeria have a great footballing history. We have defeated Nigeria more than once. We beat them on their own pitch in 1981 and in Libya in 1982. My message to Riyad Mahrez and Co, therefore, is that winning on November 12 is certainly not impossible,” Belloumi was quoted as saying by Fifa.com.
“We will win if we impose our style of play. Our team is powerful and united, and with a little bit of desire and heart, we can return home with three points in the bag.”
The former Algeria manager then deflected the pressure off his country’s national team ahead of next month’s game, insisting that the Super Eagles are “the ones under pressure.”
He explained that the Nigerians will be keen to impress their fans at home and that should put them on the edge.
“On the contrary, I believe the Nigerians will be the ones under pressure as they’re at home and playing in front of their own fans,” he said.
The 1981 African Footballer of the Year added that Algeria’s 1-1 draw in Blida with Cameroun was “a misstep” considering that they have found the Indomitable Lions difficult to play against in competitive matches.
“Our team is very strong. For me, the draw against Cameroun was just a misstep. And we mustn’t forget that Cameroun have a great team and a long World Cup history, and that we’ve never beaten them in an official match. Let’s put that slip-up behind us and concentrate on picking up three points in Nigeria,” he said.
Belloumi played at two editions of the Fifa World Cup in 1982 and 1986 in Spain and Mexico respectively.
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