Zambia is a powerful team-Nigerian players

Africa Cup of Nations – The duo of Onyekachi Apam and Seyi Olofinjana have promised teeming Nigerian fans that the Super Eagles will see off their Zambian counterparts, Chipolopolo in late Monday quarter-final match of the 27th Orange Africa Cup of Nations tournament in Lubango, Angola.

Both Nigeria and Zambia reached the quarter final at the last Nations Cup in Ghana two years ago with the under fire team.

The experience of that tournament, where the Eagles, who lacked conviction and motivation were bundled out after losing 2-1 to Ghana is better forgotten.

The Nigerians are on a familiar route and need to beat Zambia at the Tundavala Stadium in Lubango to attain the semi-final bench mark set for Coach Shaibu Amodu by the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF).

Apam, Olofinjana and Sani Kaita displayed collective resolve as they reinforced their readiness to soar against the Mighty Zambia, winners of group D.

‘We have learnt from the past experience at the tournament in Ghana. We won’t allow this opportunity pass by. We hope to emerge winners at the end of the day,’ declared Apam.

Apam, who has stepped in for Joseph Yobo since the latter damaged his Achilles tendon against Benin, admitted that Zambia is a strong side that should not be waved aside.

Though this was much attested to by Olofinjana, the out of favour midfielder nevertheless said the match will not be different from the other games the Eagles have played at the tournament.

Olofinjana also shot his mates in the arm by warning that the match against Zambia will be played at a competitive level, considering that both sides boast of a robust, time tested rivalry.

‘It will be like any other game we have played, even though we need to step up our game both technically and tactically. Zambia is a very powerful, strong and a well organised side. From what I have seen so far, they are a very compact sid e that knows how to go forward and to attack together.

“It will be a tough match considering it is a derby which by their nature are always very competitive. However, I want to believe we have got the materials to contain Zambia. It depends on how we comport ourselves and approach the match,’ said Olofinjana.

Holding midfielder, Kaita, who featured in the pre-Nations Cup friendly match against Zambia in Durban which ended goalless said the warm-up and Monday’s match are not the same situations.

‘We played them off course, but that was a friendly match which normally is everybody’s game. It is a different story now as we are looking forward to winning this match. We have won two games but we want to get to our destination, which is the final,’ Kaita said.

Courtesy of PANA

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