New Super Eagles captain Mikel Obi has assured Nigerians that the team would beat the Egyptians make the day truly a Good Friday.
He spoke confidently of the tasks ahead soon after he was publicly presented as the new captain of the team in Kaduna.
As the Eagles leader, he said, “I will not let you all down.”
On his first task leading the team Mikel said the Egyptians would be tough but noted that the Eagles would grab the full points.
“The game is going to be a tough one; but we know we have to win. We don’t need to spend more time thinking about Egypt,” he said.
“We need to spend more time on our tactics. We just need to make sure we play to our strengths and win here and also in Egypt.”
Mikel became the captain on Thursday after Ahmed Musa relinquished the position at a press briefing in Kaduna. Musa, who was named captain by former Nigeria coach Sunday Oliseh in controversial circumstance, said he stepped aside to “right the wrong” previously done.
Mikel was the vice-captain to the former Eagles skipper Vincent Enyeama. He first played for the Eagles in 2005, while CSKA Moscow winger Ahmed Musa made his first appearance for Nigeria years later.
On Thursday Musa said, “Something happened before I was made the captain of the Super Eagles then. There was a mix-up. But right now, we have a new administration. Mikel is my senior and a big brother. So, Mikel is the captain, not me.”
Mikel hailed him as a “wonderful professional” and exhaustively commended his courage.
Nigeria coach Samson Siasia then named Musa the vice-captain.
“I want to thank Ahmed Musa for being a wonderful professional,” he remarked.
“It takes a man to come out and do what Ahmed Musa has done today. So, I commend him a lot for doing that.”
And later on Thursday the Nigeria Football Federation boss, Amaju Pinnick, praised Kaduna fans for their patriotism.
Pinnick, leading a delegation of NFF officials to Sir Kashim Ibrahim House to meet Kaduna Governor, Nasir el-Rufai, said the support the Eagles had in Kaduna in the past was dogmatic.
“Kaduna fans will cheer you from the beginning to the end of the match,” Pinnick told el-Rufai, adding “Kaduna turf is the best in Africa now.”
The governor, in response said sports, football in particular, remained the only unifying factor in the country.
He disclosed the state’s preparedness to introduce schools sports as a way of discovering talents. The governor remains optimistic that Nigeria will beat Egypt.
“By coming to Kaduna, Egypt have made a mistake because they are going to lose,” he said