Former Nigeria goalkeeper Emmanuel Babayaro has described Sunday’s friendly against Brazil as a good test for the Super Eagles.
Babayaro, a member of the Atlanta 1996 gold medal-winning team, however, suggests the Samba Boys are no longer the invincible team they used to be, and Nigeria have a chance of getting a good result against the five-time world champions if they get their acts right on Sunday in Singapore.
“I think it is a good test for the Super Eagles even though I don’t see this present Brazil team as the same as we used to know,” Babayaro told Goal in an exclusive interview
“Since after the World Cup they hosted,I have not seen Brazil do anything quite spectacular but the fact still remains Brazil is Brazil any day and they have quality players like Neymar and the likes in their team, so they would definitely be a good test for our team but we can get a good result against them if we get our acts right.”
With the season still very young across the globe, Babayaro suggests that players may likely be cautious during Sunday’s game so fans might not see the very best of performances.
“In games like this, you might not get the very best from players because they would not want to go back to their respective club injured, most players tread cautiously in this kind of in-between season friendly games,” Babayaro continued.
While reflecting on the 1-1 draw recorded between Senegal and Brazil on Thursday, Babayaro - a member of the Nigeria U17 team that won World Cup in 1993 - said it may influence Sunday’s game.
“The result from Thursday’s game could rub off on how Sunday’s friendly will go,” he added.
“After drawing against Senegal in their last outing, Brazil can either come all out to make sure they win against Nigeria and also the Super Eagles can also draw inspiration that if Senegal can hold the Brazil team, they can do same if not better."
Brazil beat Nigeria 3-0 in 2003 during the last meeting at senior level between the two countries.