Nigeria - Namibia Preview: Super Eagles hope for a perfect start to World Cup qualifiers
The Super Eagles will hope to build up momentum in the qualifiers by winning big against the Brave Warriors on Sunday
By Babajide Alaka
Oboabona, Ambrose, Egweke, Echiejile
Obiorah, Ogude, Moses, Utaka
I. Uche, K. Uche
Ngatjizeko, Mwedihanga, Horaeb, Sabatha
Benjamin, Jacobs, Isaacks, Ketjijere
The journey to Brazil for the 2014 World Cup begins on Sunday for the Nigeria national football team, the Super Eagles, and after non-qualification for the 2012 Africa Cup of Nations, there is added pressure on Stephen Keshi's crew to deliver in outstanding fashion.
Vincent Enyeama should start as goalkeeper and captain with Godfrey Oboabona, Papa Idris, Efe Ambrose and Elderson Echiejile as the defenders. The centre of midfield is where Keshi will have the most difficulty, with no ingrained creative midfielder. So expect Fengor Ogude and Obiorah Nwankwo to anchor the midfield with John Utaka and Victor Moses patrolling the flanks. Leading the attack will definitely be Ikechukwu Uche supported by Kalu Uche.
Keshi has led the team in seven games, with back-to-back losses in friendly games against Egypt and Peru, so he will be mindful of a third straight defeat and will do everything humanly possible to get a victory over the Brave Warriors from Namibia.
The second half could see Ahmed Musa and Ejike Uzoenyi brought in to speed up the attack using the flanks and maybe Ekigho Ekiosun, if the Eagles are finding it hard to break through the massed Namibian ranks.
The Namibians are a relatively unknown quantity but they have a lot of young players which will make them very dangerous on fast breaks. No matter what the Eagles throw at the Brave Warriors, they must always consider the defence to curtail the fast attacks of the Namibians.
The Namibians will look to the agility of Orlando Pirates striker Rudolph Bester (pictured below) who is one of the most experienced players in the squad. Bester won the Premier Soccer League with Pirates in the recently concluded season and he played in the Namibia squad during the 2008 Afcon in Ghana.
|DID YOU KNOW?|
- In two previous games against Namibia, Nigeria have scored six goals and conceded none.
- Namibia played its first international under the name South-West Africa on 16 May, 1989.
- Namibia is ranked 120th in the world by Fifa compared to Nigeria’s 63rd place ranking.
- Midfielder Eslin Kamuhanga is referred to as a Nigerian by the Namibian squad due to his ability to speak Nigerian Pidgin learnt from watching Nollywood films.
- If Nwankwo Obiorah plays, he will be winning his first cap for Nigeria's senior squad.
- It will be Stephen Keshi’s eighth match as Super Eagles head coach.
- Vincent Enyeama will be earning his 67th cap against Namibia on Sunday.
- John Utaka is making a return into the Nigeria side for the first time since 2010.
|Sign up with William Hill for a free bet up to £25|
|Sign up with bet365 for a free bet up to £200|
|Sign up to Paddy Power for £250 in free bets|
|Sign up today with Coral and get a £50 FREE bet - no strings attached!|
|Sign up today with BetVictor and get a £25 FREE BET!|
|Sign up with Betway for an exclusive bet £10 get £20 free bet!|
Top 3 Predictions
Nigeria 2-0 Namibia
- 19.55 %
Nigeria 3-0 Namibia
- 16.62 %
Nigeria 3-1 Namibia
- 15.64 %
|World Cup Qualifying - Africa (WCQ)||Jun 12, 2013||Namibia 1 - Nigeria 1|
|World Cup Qualifying - Africa (WCQ)||Jun 3, 2012||Nigeria 1 - Namibia 0|
|Nov 18, 2013||Italy 2 - Nigeria 2||FR|
|Nov 16, 2013||Nigeria 2 - Ethiopia 0||WCQ|
|Oct 28, 2013||Jordan 1 - Nigeria 0||FR|
|Oct 13, 2013||Ethiopia 1 - Nigeria 2||WCQ|
|Sep 10, 2013||Nigeria 4 - Burkina Faso 1||FR|
|-||Gege Oluwafemi Soriola|
|3||Uwa Elderson Echiejile||Defender|
|-||Da Costa Angula||Defender|
|-||Eslin KAMAHUNGA Kamahunga|
|-||Ronald Himeekua Stigga Ketjijere|