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AFCON 2023: Don’t put Super Eagles under pressure – Analyst

A sports analyst, Tayo Balogun, has urged Nigerians not to put Super Eagles under pressure at the ongoing Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) in Cote d’Ivoire.

Balogun said this in a telephone interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Saturday.

He said sending delegations to visit the team in Cote d’Ivoire would distract both the players and the coaching staff.

“Promising them heaven on earth is not needed right now. Let them be themselves.

“I’m optimistic that the team will get better if they don’t get distracted.

“I appreciate the coach saying he doesn’t want too many people coming to distract them.

“If this is maintained, they will get as far as the final and possibly win the cup. Let’s not put them under pressure; they are good enough already,” he said.

According to him, the Eagles have so far done well and keep maturing with each game.

“I have never seen any Nigerian team that is so level-headed, composed, and humbled. They didn’t play any match like they were better than their opponent.

“They went into every match with respect for their opponents and that has greatly worked for them. There is understanding and synergy between them,” he said.

Balogun added that in five matches Super Eagles had conceded only one goal.

“This says a lot about the defence; the match against Angola was a beautiful one that had so many goal chances that we were unable to convert,” he said.

“I foresee the Eagles beating either South Africa or Cape Verde.

“We will win either of them but not easily. There’s a lot of pressure on Victor Osimhen. He’s putting himself under too much pressure, and this shouldn’t be.

“A physiologist needs to tell him to calm down. I see him scoring two or three goals in this competition,” he said. (NAN)

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