The Super Eagles of Nigeria, having won four out of their five AFCON qualification tie, sits atop the Group A standings with 12 points.
Super Eagles vice-captain, William Troost-Ekong, has emphasized that Nigeria’s upcoming Africa Cup of Nations qualification tie against Sao Tome and Principe is far from being a “dead rubber” game, Soccernet.ng reports.
Jose Peseiro’s troops have already secured a spot to contest with other African teams at the 2023 AFCON tournament, which will be held in Ivory Coast in January 2024.
Having won four out of their five AFCON qualification matches, Nigeria leads the Group A standings with 12 points, a comfortable 2 points ahead of Guinea-Bissau, who have 10 points.
Troost-Ekong, speaking during a pre-match press conference, made it clear that the team approaches every match with pride and determination.
“It’s never a ‘dead rubber game’ because I think playing for Nigeria is a matter of pride. All of us are very honored to be here. We want to put up a good show and finish this group in the best way possible.” he stated.
He continued, “We are treating this game the same as any other game in the group. We want to win our group, and also give us the best chance to create a winning culture for the next games and the World Cup qualifiers. So I don’t believe in that statement [dead rubber game], and I think you’ve all seen the training yesterday, and the days before, all the boys are very hungry, and we’d have the same idea we want to put in the game tomorrow.”
The Super Eagles of Nigeria are set to face Sao Tome at the Uyo Stadium with a strong determination to finish their qualification campaign on a high note.