Former Nigeria international Christian Chukwu has warned his countrymen to stay focused as Algeria, their next opponents in the 2018 Fifa World Cup qualification, are capable of posing lots of problems.
Nigeria’s Super Eagles will play hosts to the Fennecs of Algeria at the Godswill Akpabio Stadium in Uyo on November 12 and go into that game as group leaders while the North Africans dropped points at home against Cameroon and at the same time ended their relationship with their head coach, Milovan Rajevac.
Chukwu feels the Nigerian squad should put all of the events of the opening day in the final round of the World Cup qualifying series in Africa behind them and focus on their next game.
He added that the Algerians will not be easy opponents after they dropped points in Blida in front of their supports in a 1-1 draw with Cameroon’s Indomitable Lions.
“I look at Algeria who are our next opponents and I do not think they will be easy. So we must up our game, stay focused and work hard for that game. Algeria dropped points at home and they will want to give everything to get something in their next game to make amends for the points they dropped at home against Cameroon.
“Also, they are a very technical team which is why I want our players to stay focused and put the win in Zambia behind them. Algeria, like Cameroon, are different kinds of opponents (from Zambia), but first the team must focus on Algeria and give their best to win the game because this is a big chance to take another three points after the win in Zambia,” Chukwu told supersport.com.
However, Chukwu feels relieved that the Super Eagles began the final phase of the World Cup qualification on a winning note and believes that “it will give the players confidence going into the second game (against Algeria) next month.”
He also points to the exciting youngsters in the Nigerian squad, capable of turning any game on its heads, as reason to be confident ahead of the match against Algeria, but he still thinks the team are still work in progress and opted not to speak on where they need to improve.
“We have a lot of young players who are good but we need to still work on the team because we played more individually than as a team. I am a member of the (Nigeria Football Federation) technical committee and I cannot talk on that publicly,” Chukwu said while evading the question on highlighting the team’s frailties after the Zambian game.