Nigeria's Iwobi expects tough competition at Nations Cup

Ahram Online , Wednesday 19 Jun 2019,
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Alex Iwobi
Alex Iwobi (Photo: AFP)

Nigeria winger Alex Iwobi refused to tip his side as favorites in their African Cup of Nations group, stressing  that competition in the tournament "would be like a war."

The Super Eagles were handed an easy draw as they will feature in Group B along with debutants Madagascar and Burundi as well as Guinea.

“Everyone is saying on papers that we should go through and qualify from the group but we know it is not going to be easy,” Iwobi told the Nigeria Football Federation on Wednesday.

“Every team is there to try and do their best, to try and win. It is going to be almost like a war, it is going to be a serious battle and fight.

“I’m sure Madagascar and Burundi, even though it is their first, they will come to prove to everyone why they had the chance to get to the Nations Cup.

The Arsenal winger said Nigeria's young crop of players is capable of helping the team go far in the tournament.

Iwobi is one of only three players remaining from the side that won the 2013 Nations Cup title, with this edition marking the first appearance of 20 players.

“We know it will not be easy because it’s been a while we played at the Africa Cup of Nations but we are going with confidence and our heads held up high," he added.

“And not only that, we are still young and the future is very bright with young talents in the team. There is a lot of hope and a bright future ahead of us.”

The 23-year-old said that the players are eager to fulfill their dream of winning the Nations Cup.

"We haven’t really pinpointed what we want to achieve but we all have this dream and this idea that we want to win the competition so that’s what we are going to do because we are confident and we are going to keep working hard and hopefully, we can do not just ourselves proud but our nation as well," he concluded. 


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Group A W D L P
Egypt
3 0 0 9
Uganda
1 1 1 4
DR Congo
1 0 2 3
Zimbabwe
0 1 2 1
Group B W D L P
Madagascar
2 1 0 7
Nigeria
2 0 1 6
Guinea
1 1 1 4
Burundi
0 0 3 0
Group C W D L P
Algeria
3 0 0 9
Senegal
2 0 1 6
Kenya
1 0 2 3
Tanzania
0 0 3 0
Group D W D L P
Morocco
3 0 0 9
Cote d'Ivoire
2 0 1 6
South Africa
1 0 2 3
Namibia
0 0 3 0
Group E W D L P
Mali
2 1 0 7
Tunisia
0 3 0 3
Angola
0 2 1 2
Mauritania
0 2 1 2
Group F W D L P
Ghana
1 2 0 5
Cameroon
1 2 0 5
Benin
0 3 0 3
Guinea Bissau
0 1 2 1