By Lunga Ntuli
Nigeria captain Joseph Yobo believes that his side have responded well to the criticism they received before the 2013 Africa Cup of Nations.
The Super Eagles face Burkina Faso in the final of the competition, having knocked out pre-tournament favourites Cote d'Ivoire in the last eight, and the Fenerbahce defender is delighted with his side's progress.
"Sometimes it is good to have negative people around you, and also those you undermine you, because they push you to become the best you can possibly be," he told Goal.com.
"I will not lie. This has been a great journey. At the same time, things have not been easy, as you can see, the competition has been tight.
“We need to be humble for our success. We are aware that it was only God’s grace and therefore we must try not to take the credit. I think this was a great victory and every player contributed in the win."
Yobo went on to say that he does not really care who starts the final, so long as they do well.
“It doesn't really matter who starts the match, I believe that every decision that the coach makes, is for the better," he continued.
"Even during the finals, I will not really be concerned about starting, but so long as I will get a chance to play and add value to the team."
Nigeria beat Mali 4-1 in the semi-final on February 6, and Yobo revealed they targeted their opponents' lack of dynamism.
"We knew that they don’t really rely on pace so we thought that it is better if we just try and kill them [with pace] during the first half," he added.
"Honestly, I did not think that we were going to score so many goals, but when opportunities came, we made sure that we capitalised."