Ex-Nigerian international Yakubu Aiyegbeni has expressed optimism towards the chances of Nigeria qualifying for the 2022 FIFA World Cup in Qatar.
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Doubts were raised over the chances of the Super Eagles qualifying for the global showpiece after a 1-0 loss to the Central African Republic on Thursday, October 7, 2021.
Gernot Rohr and his charges got perfect revenge on Sunday, October 10 in Douala after a 2-0 win over the Central Africans. Nigeria tops Group C of the qualifiers with 9 points, two points ahead of second-placed Cape Verde but critics are still not convinced about the team.
Speaking to Goal, Yakubu said:
“I think when any country wants to play Nigeria, they always give more and it gets tough…We might have lost one game, but I still believe we’ve got a chance to qualify for the 2022 FIFA World Cup.”
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The former Everton FC star went further to opine that the current Super Eagles squad has enough quality to make it to Qatar.
“I think with the players we have in the team like [Wilfred] Ndidi as well as [Victor] Osimhen the striker, we have a chance to qualify. I’m not scared but I know we’ll qualify because we’ve got the players. We’ve struggled in the past to qualify for the World Cup. But I think with this team and the way they play now, and the countries they’re playing against now, I think we’ve got chances to pull through.”
Popular among his English fans as the “Big Yak’’ during his playing days, Aiyegbeni who is the third-highest goal scorer in the history of the Super Eagles, featured at four Africa Cup of Nations tournaments for Nigeria, the 2000 Sydney Olympics, and the 2010 FIFA World Cup in South Africa. He featured for top English clubs like Middlesbrough, Everton, Blackburn Rovers, and more before retirement.
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