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Africa U23 Cup of Nations

U23 Afcon: Okechukwu urges Nigeria to beat Cote d'Ivoire

12:19 GMT+3 08/11/2019
Nigeria U23 vs. Libya U23
The midfielder has urged the Olympic Eagles to go all out against their West African neighbours when they clash at the Al Salam Stadium in Cairo

Azubuike Okechukwu has called on Nigeria to Cote d'Ivoire when they meet in their opening Group B fixture at the 2019 Africa U23 Cup of Nations on Saturday.

Imama Amapakabo’s men qualified for the tournament after defeating Sudan, and a win against the Ivorians will increase their chances of securing one of the three tickets to represent Africa at the Tokyo 2020 Olympics Games.

Okechukwu, who will not play a part in the tournament after his Turkish club Istanbul Basaksehir failed to release him, is confident Nigeria can claim victory in the encounter.

“I’m going to be praying for the lads and then support them in their first game and I know the boys can get a win from the game,” he told AOI.

“We just have to want it more than the other teams and we will qualify for the Olympics.”

Huesca midfielder Kelechi Nwakali is expected to captain Nigeria in the encounter in the absence of Okechukwu.