Atsu assesses chances of Nigeria, Senegal and Egypt ahead of 2018 World Cup

Christian Atsu
The Ghana international runs the rule over the three teams as they prepare for Russia 2018

Ghana's 2014 Fifa World Cup star Christian Atsu believes Senegal, Nigeria and Egypt will be good representatives of Africa at this year's global showpiece. 

The three countries, together with Morocco and Tunisia, are set to carry the continent's hopes at Russia 2018 in June/July.

“When you look at the Senegal team, they have Sadio Mane and deserved it [World Cup qualification], so with hard work I think they will do well," Atsu told Voice Online.

“The Nigeria team have a lot of young players - very talented players - who are playing at a high level.

“Some are playing in La Liga, some in the Premier League and when you look at their group they won almost all of their matches.

"So I believe Nigeria will be one of the countries to go far in the World Cup."

Africa's best position at the World Cup since debuting in 1934 has been quarter-final berths achieved by Cameroon, Senegal and Ghana in 1990, 2002 and 2010 respectively.

“Also Egypt - they have Mohammed Salah, they have a very good coach [Hector Cuper] and they play really compact," Atsu added. 

"I have played against them and they are really hard to play against. 

"I believe they can also go far.”

Egypt - the first African country to play at the World Cup - have been placed in Group A, alongside hosts Russia, Uruguay and Saudi Arabia.

Morocco find themselves in Group B, which also contains Portugal, Spain and Iran.

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Nigeria are set to play Argentina in the group stage for the fifth time as both sides made Group D. Iceland and Croatia are the other teams of the group.

Tunisia have England, Belgium and Panama to battle in Group G, while Senegal, who are set to return to the global showpiece for the first time since debuting in 2002, will square off against Poland, Colombia and Japan in Group H.