·We will beat Nigeria silly in Niger —Coach
HOLDING his head high that his young lads narrowly lost 0-1 to world U-17 champions, the Golden Eaglets in their first leg AFCON U-17 Championship qualifier on Saturday in Abuja, the chief coach of the Junior Menas of Niger Republic, Soumeyla Tiemogo, has boasted the Nigerian side will be beaten in the reverse fixture.
The Manu Garba-tutored Eaglets had raised expectation of a goals feast early in the encounter as Alagbe Tobiloba scored in the second minute, but went to sleep for the rest minutes of the game decided at the National Stadium, Abuja.
Speaking with journalists after the match, Tiemogo declared that the Eaglets were no match for the young Nigeriens, adding that his boys would beat the world champions in Niamey.
“My boys played well against the Nigerians. With what I saw of the Golden Eaglets, they cannot withstand my boys in the second leg in Niamey,” Tiemogo boasted.
He added that his boys played well against the five-time world U-17 champions, saying that this was a boost for them in the second leg coming up in a fortnight.
On his part, however, the Eaglets’ head coach, Garba, stated that he was satisfied with the performance of his players, even though the coaching crew had noticed some lapses in the team, which they were going to work on before the return leg.
According to Garba, who led the Eaglets to win the 2013 FIFA U-17 World Cup, the slim win was a good result, noting that if the Nigeriens had scored in Abuja, it would have been a problem for the Eaglets.
“It is a good result. Scoring many goals was our expectation. We created many chances but the the boys could not convert them. This is football for you. We have seen all the lapses, especially when it comes to scoring goals; we will work on them. By God’s grace, we are going to beat them in Niger,” Garba said.
He declared that Nigeria could not afford to crash out at this stage of the qualifying series of the African U-17 Championship and as such the Eaglets would scale through the Nigerien hurdle.
He informed that the Eaglets would be moving down to Sokoto to acclimatise ahead of the return encounter in Niamey, saying that, “we are going to Sokoto to acclimatize from there we will move to Niger.”