Leadership (Abuja)

Nigeria: Eagles Will Not Disappoint - Keshi

Photo: Ryan Wilkisky/BackpagePix
Emmanuel Emenike of Nigeria shoots at goal during the quarter-final against Cote d'Ivoire in Rustenburg, South Africa.

Super Eagles boss, Stephen Keshi has said the national team will be bold and ready for the quarter final duel against the Elephants of Cote D' Ivoire on Sunday. He said Nigerians should remain steadfast as the team will not disappoint. Skipper, Joseph Yobo also expressed optimism.

Keshi was reacting to news making the rounds that Nigerians were scared of the confrontation with the Ivorien Elephants. "If you must win a trophy you must beat the biggest and best teams, so why should we be afraid of any team. The bigger they come the bigger they will fall. Who told you that if it were to be the Hawks of Togo, it will be a walk-over. There is no small team anywhere and the Ivoriens know. It's a classic and we will show why we are the Super Eagles on Sunday".

Keshi said the spirit in camp has been very good so far and all the 23 players in the squad are all healthy and ready to give their best. Nigerians should just be praying for their team and have belief in them instead of expressing any fear, because on Sunday it will eleven players from Ivory Coast against the same number from Nigeria".

Yobo on his part said the game will be an exciting one for him and he's looking forward eagerly to it. "They are a great team and so we are and we know ourselves well, so no one is afraid of the other just a case of top football giants clashing at the wrong time. I think we shall be up to it", he said.

The Super Eagles will each receive $15,000 if they beat Cote d'Ivoire and qualify for the semi-final of the 2013 AFCON on Sunday.

A top Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) official reconfirmed an MTNFootball.com exclusive of several weeks ago when he also disclosed each player will be $20,000 richer if they triumph in the semi-final.

For victory in the championship game on February 10 inside the National Stadium in Johannesburg, each player will pocket another $30,000.

Each player received $30,000 a day after the team qualified for the quarterfinal on Tuesday.

Team sponsor Guinness has also made a financial commitment for goals scored at the AFCON, while the Eagles are expecting billionaire Aliko Dangote to splash more cash after they reached the last eight.

Each player was paid about $80,000 when Nigeria finished third at the 2010 Nations Cup in Angola.

On Sunday afternoon in Rustenburg, they face 1992 champions Cote d'Ivoire.

The winners of this match-up will clash with the winners of the quarterfinal between hosts South Africa and Mali.

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