'This is more than a friendly' – Kanu charges Nigeria ahead of Brazil clash

Neymar Brazil 2019
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Ahead of Sunday’s international friendly against the Selecao, the Super Eagles great has tasked Gernot Rohr’s men to gun for victory
Nwankwo Kanu has labelled Sunday’s clash between Brazil and Nigeria “more than a friendly” as both teams battle for supremacy in Singapore.

These heavyweights will be meeting for the second time ever, having previously met in 2003 when the South Americans triumphed 3-0 in Abuja.

Prior to the match, Brazil assistant coach Cleber Xavier indicated the encounter will only help the Selecao prepare for their World Cup qualification campaign, but Kanu made no effort to downplay how big the match will be.

“It will be a wonderful game and that is the kind of friendly we ask for. If I were still playing, I will be very happy,” he told Goal.

“For the boys who will turn up for the game, they should remember that this is more than a friendly. The Brazilians will be coming out in full force because they know what we are up to.

“They are still very much hurt because of what we did to them at the Atlanta 96 Olympics, so victory is what they will be aiming for.

Nwankwo Kanu PS

“That being said, we don’t have to start panicking – it’s the same Brazil, we only have to go out there, relax and play well.

“If these boys can beat Brazil, it will be a confidence and morale booster for the team and that will have a positive effect on other games they play.

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“This game is a big test for the players, the coaches and the country at large but I believe we have what it takes to come out on top after 90 minutes.”

Brazil boast with 15 wins and a draw in their last 16 fixtures against African oppositions – their only stalemate came against Senegal on Thursday.

Famara Diedhiou scored a penalty late in the first half to cancel out Roberto Firmino's ninth-minute opener in the 1-1 draw at the Singapore National Stadium.