Nigeria coach Jose Peseiro has stressed the importance of his team not conceding when they take on Cameroon in the Round of 16 fixture of the 2023 Africa Cup of Nations at the Stade Félix Houphouët-Boigny in Abidjan.
It was in fact in this iconic arena that the Indomitable Lions won their very first trophy in the competition in 1984 against the Super Eagles by 3-1. Post the historic lifting of the title, Cameroon won two finals against Nigeria in 1988 in Morocco and in 2000 in Nigeria.
The Super Eagles have however dominated the most recent meetings between the two sides. They claimed victory during the quarter-finals in the 2004 edition played in Tunisia as well as the round of 16 win during the 2019 showpiece in Egypt.
“It’s a difficult match. We are in the round of 16 and playing against a great team. We don’t want to concede, we want to score a goal and maintain our lead. We expect that history will not repeat itself at the Stade Félix Houphouët-Boigny,” said Peseiro.
“Even if the statistics are not for us, we are going to play. It is a mission that has been entrusted to us and we are going to try to carry it out. We want to win; we want to stay in this tournament until the end.”
Housed in Group A of the competition, Nigeria did not suffer to obtain its ticket for the second round. After a draw (1-1) against Guinea during their first outing, José Peseiro and his team edged Ivory Coast by 1-0 before getting the same result over Guinea-Bissau to secure their ticket.
Cameroon had a slightly more difficult journey after playing out to a 1-1 draw to Guinea, losing 3-1 to Senegal, and eventually fought back for a 3-2 win over The Gambia.