Former Super Eagles star, John Mikel Obi has listed Nigeria among the African favourites to win the title at the upcoming 2023 Africa Cup of Nations, AFCON.
Jose Peseiro’s men are drawn in Group A with hosts of the tournament, Cote d’Ivoire, Equatorial Guinea and Guinea-Bissau.
Mikel expressed hopes to CAFonline that Super Eagles, three-time AFCON winners, can challenge for the title at the competition next year.
“We are always favourites, this is every time we go into the tournament and it’s no different this time. Everyone knows that we are one of the favourites – not the massive favourite but definitely one of the favourites,” the ex-Chelsea midfielder said.
The Super Eagles will kick-off their campaign on January 14 against Equatorial Guinea before facing the hosts four days later in what will be a repeat of the 2013 edition quarter-final that saw them overcome Cote d’Ivoire 2-1.
Meanwhile, in another news…
Former head coach of South Africa’s national team, Pitso Mosimane has said if he is presented with the chance to manage the Super Eagles he would gladly accept the offer.
Mosimane, who is also a former South Africa international, is a free agent after leaving Saudi club, Al Wahda in November.
KickOff quoted him as saying the Nigerian team has talented players like Chukwueze and Osimhen, but noted that it was not enough to win games.
The ex-Bafana Bafana manager believes he has what it takes to develop the Super Eagles if the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) is interested in hiring an African.
Mosimane said; “They have a lot of talent – the likes of Samuel Chukwueze and Napoli striker, Victor Osimhen. But talent alone is not enough, because if it were only about talent, they would have beaten Lesotho 7-0, but they drew with them. And pound for pound, they would have also beaten Zimbabwe.
“So, the job of the coach is to bring confidence, stability, leadership, winning mentality, and teamwork within the group. The Nigeria job is one I would consider, but it would also depend on whether they want the team to be led by an African. Because the only African coach they had was Stephen Keshi.”