28 June 2017

Nigeria/Cameroon: Eagles Must Prepare Well for Cameroon - Amuneke

Former Nigeria international, Emmanuel Amuneke has warned Super Eagles handlers and the players, in particular, not to take the 2018 World Cup qualifying match against the Indomitable Lions of Cameroon lightly.

Speaking from the backdrop of Cameroon's 1-3 loss to Germany and their eventual elimination from the FIFA Confederations Cup in Russia on Sunday, the FIFA U-17 World Cup-winning coach warned that no one should conclude that the Indomitable Lions would be easy prey to Nigeria based on that match.

"No two matches are the same. You cannot say you will defeat an opponent before a match. It is only after an encounter that a winner can emerge, not before," the 1994 AFCON winner said.

"To win a match, the team has to be well prepared. And that is my advise to both the Super Eagles handlers and the players. They must prepare hard for that game because it is going to be a tough game."

Amuneke was happy that some Super Eagles players who were sidelined by injury are beginning to recover. His view on Carl Ikeme, Eagles' first choice goalkeeper says it all. "It is good he is back. Every player is important to the team so, I see his return as a good omen for the team. One hopes all the others {like Mikel Obi and Victor Moses} will be back before the Cameroon match."

Amuneke was asked if former number one Eagles goalkeeper, Vincent Enyeama should be convinced to return, given the perennial goalkeeping challenge the team was facing of late. He replied thus: "Why do we like to create problems where there is none. Enyeama has decided to rest his international career for good. We should respect his decision. It will be wrong to go back to Enyeama. There are others who need to grow and if you don't make them face challenges there is no way they can grow."

He added, "If we are thinking of bringing back Enyeama, then we can as well go and beg Jay Jay Okocha, Kanu or Amuneke to return. Let's consider Enyeama's case closed." Amuneke said.

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