The Super Eagles have appeared in the finals of the FIFA World Cup on six occasions, and efforts to make it to her seventh appearance begins next month
Former Nigeria international Jonathan Akpoborie has opined that Macedonia’s shocking victory over four-time world champions Germany confirms that there are no more minnows in football.
The ex-Stuttgart ace, however, expects the Super Eagles to overcome all foes and qualify for next year’s FIFA World Cup to be hosted by Qatar.
Nigeria have been grouped alongside Liberia, Central African Republic (CAR), and Cape Verde, with the race for Qatar 2022 expected to heat up in late May or early June.
The Gernot Rohr-tutored side is favourite to top a group that comprises teams that have never qualified for the Mundial.
Only group winners will make it to the final qualifying round, which would be straight knock-out matches that will produce five nations that will represent the continent in the tournament in Qatar.
Nigeria finished top of the Afcon-qualifying Group L and qualified for Cameroon 2022 with two games to spare.
Confidence is back on the high for the Super Eagles following two convincing victories over the Benin Republic and Lesotho last month.
But Macedonia’s stunning 2-1 win in Germany on March 31st is the latest wake-up call for many that football minnows are shedding that inferiority cloak.
Still, Akpoborie expects the Super Eagles, with all the talented stars in their ranks, to make it to their fourth consecutive World Cup appearance.
“Qualification for the 2022 World Cup won’t be much stress for the Super Eagles considering the array of stars at Rohr’s disposal,” the ex-striker said as per the Leadership.
“I quite agree with you that there is no minnow any longer in Africa going by what a team like Macedonia did to Germany.
“However, Nigeria will definitely want to make an early mark by picking quick points to feel comfortable in the group.
“I really don’t see these teams stopping the Super Eagles regardless of who they parade because our players are more experienced and hungry for success.”
The Super Eagles are scheduled to kick off their World Cup qualifying campaign with a home game versus Liberia before travelling to Cape Verde for their matchday two clash.