Nigeria–Malawi Match Preview: Flames out to spoil Super Eagles' party
The Super Eagles out to prove to Tom Saintfiet and the Flames that they are the champions of Africa in Saturday's crunch World CUp qualifier
By Babajide Alaka
Efe, Oboabona, Egwueke, Echiejile
Onazi, Mikel, Ogu
Musa, Emenike, Moses
Kayira, Namwela, Sangala, Mzava
Chavula, Banda, Kamwendo
Nyondo, Mwafulirwa, Ngalande
When Nigeria scored in the 89th minute on June 9, 2012, through Reuben Gabriel, it was going to be smooth sailing until John Banda capitalized on a mistake by Vincent Enyeama to equalize in the 92nd minute and ensure that the Flames would live to fight another day.
That day has arrived for the Malawians but so much has changed from that evening in Blantyre. Especially for the team from Malawi on the coaching front where a certain Tom Saintfiet is now in charge.
There has been so much mud slinging from both parties in the last few weeks preceding this encounter that fans of both teams will be ready for an explosive match.
The Super Eagles went on from that draw to become African champions and are favoured to qualify for the last round of African qualifiers for the 2014 World Cup scheduled for Brazil.
The Super Eagles under coach Stephen Keshi have been resolute in their 4-3-3 formation while the Flames are expected to play in a 4-5-1 formation, staying solid in midfield like the Kenyans did in April when they got a 1-1 draw in Calabar.
The Malawians will be looking to score the first goal and then defend for their lives as they seek to cause an upset of gargantuan proportions. While the Eagles are primed to give ‘Malawi the beating they require’, according to Ahmed Musa, who is expected to start on the right of the attack.
If the Super Eagles score in the first 15 minutes, expect a large scoreline.
|DID YOU KNOW?|
- Malawi have never qualified for the World Cup finals.
- In seven matches between Nigeria and Malawi, the Eagles have five wins and two draws.
Joseph Kamwendo has 65 caps for the Flames
- Vincent Enyeama (pictured) will win his 86th cap if he starts against Malawi.
- Malawi have lost thrice in their last eight matches while Nigeria have lost twice
- Nigeria have scored 18 goals against Malawi and conceded 8.
Top 3 Predictions
Nigeria 3-1 Malawi
- 21.44 %
Nigeria 2-0 Malawi
- 18.37 %
Nigeria 3-0 Malawi
- 17.39 %
|World Cup Qualification 2014 (Africa) (WCQA)||07 Sep 2013||Nigeria 2 - Malawi 0|
|World Cup Qualification 2014 (Africa) (WCQA)||09 Jun 2012||Malawi 1 - Nigeria 1|
|06 Mar 2014||Mexico 0 - Nigeria 0||FR|
|01 Feb 2014||Zimbabwe 0 - Nigeria 1||CHAN|
|29 Jan 2014||Nigeria 0 - Ghana 0||CHAN|
|25 Jan 2014||Nigeria 4 - Morocco 3||CHAN|
|19 Jan 2014||Nigeria 3 - South Africa 1||CHAN|
|3||Uwa Elderson Echiejile||Defender|
|10||John Obi Mikel||Midfielder|
|7||Ahmed Firaz Moosa||Striker|
|-||John Ogochukwu Ogu|
|-||John Kintu Lanjesi||Defender|