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The Minister of Youth and Sports Solomon Dalung is optimistic that the Super Eagles will advance from Group D of the 2018 World Cup in Russia.


Dalung made the statement after the draws were made on Friday at the State Kremlin Palace in Moscow, where Nigeria were drawn in Group D with Argentina, Croatia and Iceland.

The minister said if quality friendly games were lined up for the team, the Eagles would get beyond the quarter-finals.

“I’m confident of Eagles’ qualification from Group D. It is not an easy group considering the calibre of teams we have in that group. We met Argentina earlier in a friendly match and we beat them but it won’t be that easy at the World Cup so Nigeria will need to beware of Argentina at the competition proper.

“Coincidentally, Iceland and Croatia were in the same group of the European qualifying round for the World Cup, so it’s not going to be an easy group to qualify from. However, I am confident that if we prepare our team adequately, we will make a decent appearance in Russia.”

Dalung also used the occasion of the World Cup draws to congratulate the President of the Nigeria Football Federation Amaju Pinnick, who celebrated his 47th birthday on the day.

“I want to congratulate Pinnick on his 47th birthday and to wish him the best. So far, he has done so well for football since he took over, especially being able to qualify Nigeria for the World Cup and other landmark achievements. I wish him success in his future assignments.”

Meanwhile, the NFF president has described the Eagles’ Group D fixtures as decent.

“It’s a decent group. We are good with our group. With prayers and decent preparations, we will surely go through easily,” Pinnick said.



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