By Salifu Usman, Abuja
After failing to get the desired result against Cote d’Ivore in their opening match of WAFU B tournament on Wednesday, Nigeria’s Golden Eaglets are condemned to win today when they take on their West African arch rivals, Black Starlets of Ghana, for their second and final group match.
Coach Fatai Amoo’s boys began their campaign on a shaky note after succumbed to pressure from their Ivorian counterparts in the 76th minute of their opening game. The defeat put the record World Cup winners in a tight spot to progress to the next round of the competition.
Addressing the team ahead of the make or mar clash with Ghana, president of the Nigeria Football Federation, Amaju Melvin Pinnick, charged the Eaglets to show robust winning mentality against their perennial foes.
He urged the players to believe in themselves and go for victory. “Nigerians don’t want to know about tactics, just go, play and win the game. The mentality of Nigerians is winning, they don’t care how you win, just win. Winning gives Nigerians, a lot of joy,” Pinnick said.
“So, I just want to crave your indulgence to represent Nigeria well. I’m happy that I can see all the players in this U 17 team, I can see that we have the youngest team in this tournament, which of course, I’m very proud of.
“It is a developmental football at this level. It does not mean that we do not want to win. Nigerians wants you to win so that you will be celebrated. We want you to be celebrated, it is very important that we must win. Just work hard and ensure we beat Ghana. The attitude we always display is that we can do it. That is the spirit under my leadership in the Nigeria Football Federation and that is what we expect from you.
“Your coach will tell you the technical and tactical way to achieve winning, but what I will tell you is that you are Nigerians and for you be a Nigerian, you must be positively rugged to achieve your dream,” he said.