Salisu Yusuf says the Super Eagles are ready for Sudan's Falcons
Head Coach of the Super Eagles Salisu Yusuf has stated that Nigeria are ready for Falcons of Sudan
The Eagles booked their passage to the semifinal stage with a hard fought victory over Angola in the quarterfinal stage, and will on Wednesday, January 31 take on Sudan in the semifinal fixture.
The Falcons of Sudan earned a showdown against Nigeria, when they defeated Zambia 1 - 0 in their quarterfinal fixture.
Yusuf at the pre-match conference stated his strikers have done a good job so far, "My attackers have done well in this tournament and their goals have brought us thus far. The most important is not how many goals you score, but the goal that push the team on."
He then went on to state that the Eagles respect their Sudanese counterparts, "We have respect for Sudan, and for them to hold Morocco to a 0-0 draw, means they are a good side. This means we have to work harder. For any team to reach the semis of a major tournament, it means they have done well."
Nigeria's Captain Ikechukwu Ezenwa called for focus ahead of the game as he hopes to replicate his quarterfinal man of the match performanceto carry the team into the final.
He said "It’s good to be in the semis, and we know the importance of reaching such a stage in a major competition. We have to put our mind set together to make our country proud. I believe with determination and focus, we can do our best against Sudan."
"We are hoping for a victory against Sudan to reach the final. If matters arise and call for a repeat of my Man-of-the-Match performance against Angola; I will be around to carry the team along."
Assistant Coach of Sudan's Falcons Burhaneldin Tia, claims luck has nothing to do with his side booing a spot in the semifinal.
He said, "We have intensified preparations for the semi-final clash against Nigeria, right after beating Zambia at the quarters. We didn’t beat Zambia due to luck, but because we were better prepared and better team on the day."
He however admitted that Nigeria are a good team, but his side will do their best to progress,
"Nigeria is one of the giants of African football and it is always a pleasure to play against such a team. It will be a different game from the previous matches, but we will do our best to emerge victors and advance to the final."
"All the players are in good condition. The positive news is that we have a team of young players, who play collectively and are prepared to go all out to achieve the expected result."
Captain of Sudan Mohamed Taher, stated that his side are not under pressure going into the game.
"We are determined to carry on with our impressive run at the tournament so far. Against Nigeria will be difficult, and for such games, you have to physically and psychologically ready. We are not under any form of pressure. However, we are determined to prove to all that we are not at the semi-finals by chance." Taher said
Nigeria and Sudan are bronze medallists at the CHAN, the Sudanese with a third place finish in 2011, while Stephen Keshi led the Super Eagles to a third place finish at the 2014 edition of the tournament.
Both semifinals of the CHAN will take place on Wednesday, January 31
Morocco vs Libya at the Complexe Mohammed V Casablanca at (4:30, 5:30 Nigerian time)
Sudan vs Nigeria at the Grand stade Marrakech , Marrakech at (7:30, 8:30 Nigerian time)