Three –time champions Nigeria have arrived in the Egyptian capital, Cairo ahead of Wednesday’s potentially –explosive AFCON 2019 quarter final clash with 1996 champions South Africa at the Cairo International Stadium.
Conquerors of Cup holders Cameroon in the Round of 16 in a game played in Alexandria on Saturday, the Super Eagles have taken abode at the posh Meridien Heliopolis in one of the largest cities on the African continent.
On Sunday, following the decimation of the Indomitable Lions, the Eagles had a recovery training and then generally retired to their Helnan Palestine Hotel in Alexandria to relax for the day.
Coach Gernot Rohr has said his charges are very much looking forward to Wednesday night’s clash, which brings together once more two teams who were involved in the same group in the qualifying campaign.
First encounter was at the Godswill Akpabio Stadium, Uyo on 10thJune 2017, with the Bafana Bafana inflicting a painful 2-0 defeat on a half –strength Nigeria side. In the return in Johannesburg on 17thNovember 2018, the Eagles dominated and were denied two apparent goals by the referee in a 1-1 draw, which ultimately earned them a berth in the AFCON 2019 with a match to spare.
Rohr is not one to forget sharp pains inflicted by lower –ranked teams, and the fury of what happened in Uyo on 10th June 2017 – his first loss as Eagles’ manager in a competitive match – could be deduced in the way he spoke on arrival in Cairo, though he insisted that Nigeria is not thinking of revenge but simply a place in the semi finals.