The interim boss made eight changes against the Wild Dogs on Wednesday night, but the team still went ahead to claim the maximum points
Super Eagles interim coach Austin Eguavoen has revealed he made a lot of changes to the side that took on Guinea-Bissau in the Group D 2021 Africa Cup of Nations encounter because some players needed a rest.
Eguavoen dropped eight players from the team that played against Egypt and Sudan, with only William Troost-Ekong, Kelechi Iheanacho and Wilfred Ndidi retaining their place.
Eight players started their first match in the competition. Kelechi Nwakali, Sadiq Umar, Tyronne Ebuehi, Jamilu Collins, Alex Iwobi, Semi Ajayi, Francis Uzoho and Chidera Ejuke all earned their first starts.
There were initial fears that the changes would affect the balance and rhythm in the team, but the team went on to secure a 2-0 win.
Eguavoen has now revealed that he had to make changes to the team because it was important for him to give some players a rest and see how the fringe players would fare in a big tournament.
“We had to give some players some rest as it was necessary,” Eguavoen said after the match against Guinea-Bissau, as per Modo.
“And to now see the ones that haven’t played how they can fare when it comes to a competitive game and, of course, massive tournament like this,” he concluded.
Eguavoen is likely to bring back his regulars when Nigeria begin their knockout round campaign on Sunday.