Super Eagles coach, Gernot Rohr has admitted that Zambia would be a hard nut to crack when they confront Nigeria in the 2018 World Cup qualifier in Uyo October 7. But Zambian FA President, Andrew Kamanga believes it is a match his country can win.
Speaking in Lagos at the weekend, the Eagles manager disclosed that the Zambian national team, which is made up of young players, would fight against all odds to bring down the Super Eagles at home.
He noted that his mission at this moment is to work hard to raise a formidable squad that will qualify Nigeria for the 2018 World Cup, saying that the same spirit used by the team to fly over the Indomitable Lions would also be introduced to the young Zambia team.
Rohr admitted that Zambia’s recent outstanding performances against Algeria have given the team the courage to come to Nigeria with a mindset to spoil the Eagles’ World Cup qualification bid.
He assured that the Super Eagles technical crew would ensure that Nigeria got the World Cup ticket.
The coach, who described the Nigerian league and quality of players in the NPFL as growing gradually when compared to the standard of leagues in smaller African countries, said the country’s best players are playing in Europe where they have the best structures put in place.
He commended Eagles goalkeeper, Ikechukwu Ezenwa for his impressive performance against Cameroun, adding that the FC IfeanyiUbah star would get more opportunities to prove his worth.
“We will not rest on our oars to ensure the Eagles win the game against Zambia. Getting the World Cup ticket is in our hands and the team would not lose focus.
“Nigeria has talented players, but I think the best of the players are in Europe because of the structures in place over there.
“On the case of Enyeama, I want to say that he is welcome to the Eagles any time he wants. Every Nigerian player playing regularly for a good club would be welcome to the Eagles, but I will not accept any player, who wants to dictate his role in the area or position to play.
“Carl Ikeme is recovering well and the team believes he will be ready if the Super Eagles qualified for the World Cup,” he said.
Meanwhile, president of the Zambian FA, Andrew Kamanga has stated that the October’s World Cup qualifier against Nigeria is a must win the match to ensure their qualification for the 2018 tournament in Russia.
The Super Eagles, who are undefeated in four matches in the qualifiers, are being tipped by many pundits to take care of business and qualify for their sixth World Cup, but Kamanga is brimming with confidence after the Chipolopolo did the double over Algeria.
“We are putting in every effort to make sure that this team is adequately prepared as we face Nigeria, which for me is the do or die game as whoever wins that game will be assured of going to Russia 2018,” Kamanga told fazfootball.com.
“But most interestingly in this group, we are the only ones who have never been to the World Cup, but with the favour, we continue to draw on we should be able to qualify, come November because we have the advantage of playing Cameroun in the final round.”
The Zambian team may camp in Europe before their trip to Nigeria for the World Cup qualifier.