Flying Eagles’ coach Ladan Bosso has stated that being matched up against Brazil and Italy in the U20 men’s FIFA World Cup is a “blessing in disguise” because it will motivate his team to perform at their best.
According to Boss, all teams that have qualified for the World Cup are capable of winning and should not be underestimated. He also stated that starting off against tough opponents will ultimately make the competition easier as it progresses.
“I think Nigeria being paired with the likes of Brazil, Italy, and the Dominican Republic is a blessing in disguise. Because I believe the harsher you start, the easier it ends.
“Even before the draws, I’ve said earlier that any national team that has qualified to that level has something to offer, which means they were champions in their own rights.
“For example, we had only nine training sessions before we left for Niger. We played our first match against Ghana, then eliminated Cote d’Ivoire, and Burkina Faso.
“The final with Benin Republic was 3-1, so the harsher we start, the easier the end. The most important thing is to win our first match convincingly, then that will bring out the confidence in the team. And the second match against Italy is a winnable game because Italy is a beatable nation as far as youth football is concerned.”
When reminded that Nigerians are scared for the Flying Eagles in the ‘Group of Death” they have found themselves, Bosso said, “As far as I am concerned, I am in charge of the team for today. Anything can happen tomorrow. But the issue is if I have confidence in myself, and the players do too, I think Nigerians should have confidence in us too.
“Nobody gave us a chance the day we were going to play Ghana in Niger. Every coach wants to play in the final (of the World Cup), I’m not different.”