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Minnows’ performance shows rapid growth of African football, says Udeze

By Alex Monye 
20 January 2022   |   3:22 am
Former Super Eagles Defender, Ifeanyi Udeze, has said that the performance of teams, tagged minnows, in the group stage of the ongoing Africa Cup of Nations clearly shows that the continent’s game is coming of age.

Ifeanyi Udeze

• Nigeria may face Algeria, Cote d’Ivoire, Senegal in round of 16

Former Super Eagles Defender, Ifeanyi Udeze, has said that the performance of teams, tagged minnows, in the group stage of the ongoing Africa Cup of Nations clearly shows that the continent’s game is coming of age.

The ongoing AFCON has been so competitive in the early stage that there are prospects of the ‘big boys’ meeting in the round of 16 of the event.

Ghana was eliminated by tiny Comoros and now there is the prospect that Algeria, Senegal or Tunisia will be Nigeria’s opponents in the second round.

Udeze said the countries seen as minnows in African football approached their matches without fear of their more renowned opposition, adding that the result is that some of the teams tipped for success are already out of the competition.

He said, “The so-called minnows came to Cameroun to prove they can also play… they are the surprise elements in this competition. They have nothing to lose.

“This is a clear indication that African football has really improved. When Algeria and Ghana were beaten by the minnows, it was big news; but if it was the other way round, nobody will talk much about it.”

Udeze tipped Super Eagles to go all the way in the competition if the players remain fit, adding that their performance so far has shown that they can beat any team in the contest. 

Meanwhile, Nigeria may face Algeria, Senegal or Tunisia in the round of 16 of the ongoing championship. These teams are likely to finish among the best third placed teams from the group stage.

Equatorial Guinea recorded a shock 1-0 win over defending champions, Algeria on Sunday ni4ght, while Senegal were held to a 1-1 draw by Sierra Leone.

According to CAF schedule, Nigeria will play the best losers from Group B, E, or F. Algeria are in Group B, Senegal are in Group E and Tunisia are in Group F.

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