Nigeria’s Super Eagles will later today confront the Blue Sharks of Cape Verde in matchday2 tricky tie of the Qatar 2022 FIFA World Cup qualifying campaign on an artificial pitch at the Estadio Municipal Aderito Sena in Mindelo.
Coach Gernot Rohr-led Eagles started their qualification campaign for Qatar 2022 with a resounding 2-0 win over Liberia at the Teslim Balogun Stadium on Friday, thanks to Iheanacho’s first-half strikes.
The win shot the three African champions to the top of Group C with three points after Cape Verde played out a 1-1 draw with Central African Republic in their opening fixture on September 1.
However, the Islands nation are poised to snatch the three points and Group C’s top spot at stake against Eagles. The Blue Sharks are at full strength going into today’s match against the depleted Eagles who are without their UK-based stars due to travel restrictions.
The duo of Leon Balogun and Joe Aribo who play for Rangers of Scotland as well as Leicester City’s Wilfred Ndidi and Kelechi Iheanacho, Everton’s Alex Iwobi, Watford’s William Troost-Ekong and Oghenekaro Etebo would miss the match haven left the Eagles’ camp to return to their respective clubs.
UK bases players are banned from travelling to red-listed countries on the British government’s coronavirus watch.
Meanwhile, the chairman and CEO of Air Peace, Allen Onyeama, has vowed to splash N20 million on Super Eagles if they beat Cape Verde in today’s match.
Onyema made the promise at the Murtala Muhammed International Airport (MMIA), Lagos on Monday while on board the Air Peace brand new Embraer, 95-E2 aircraft that airlifted the players to Cape Verde.
The airline chief said qualifying for the World Cup would open another opportunity for unifying the country.
“You won your first match resoundingly and we expect that the next one happening in Cape Verde on Tuesday will not be different. Air Peace is very happy to be associated with the team,” Onyema said.
“The favour, which God granted Air Peace, is now following the team, and this is reflected in their victory against Liberia on September 3, 2021.
“I want to urge the team to use the power of sports as a medium of unification of the country.
“Gentlemen, this is why I decided to come to the airport at this time of the night by 2am to address you.”
Onyema urged the players to be at their best because Nigerians irrespective of their ethnicity, clapped and yearned for victory against Liberia.