By Mansur Abubakar and Dickson S. Adama
Kaduna – Super Eagles interim coach, Samson Siasia and the team’s new captain, John Mikel Obi has assured the country of victory against Egypt in today crucial Africa Cup of Nations qualifier in Kaduna.
The duo, who spoke at a pre-match media briefing at the Ahmadu Bello Stadium in Kaduna, said the team cannot afford to disappoint the country.
Mikel commended Coach Samson Siasia for the confidence reposed in him by appointing him the new captain of the team, and assured that he will not let the team down.
“I know what the coach demands from me as a player and leader of the team, I will not let you down. The match means a lot to us and I will do my very best as the captain to win the match. We will not disappoint Nigerians,” he promised.
Coach Samson Siasia, in his remarks expressed the readiness of the Nigeria side to come out in their very best and defeat their opponent.
“The team is ready, I have so much confidence with the crop of players and tomorrow you will see a different ball game. The boys will come out and make Nigeria proud, win and will very well,” he stated.
Siasia also explained that the change in the leadership of the team was informed by the need to follow laid down procedure in the appointment of captain for the national team.
“We considered seniority in the appointment of the new captain, it was fair for Mikel Obi to captain the team being the most senior player in the super Eagles,” Siasia said.
Meanwhile, coach Siasia yesterday picked Chelsea midfielder John Mikel Obi as the new captain of the Nigeria national team, ahead of the today’s AFCON qualifiers between the Nigeria Super Eagles and the Pharaohs of Egypt in Kaduna.
This was disclosed yesterday by outgoing captain Ahmed Musa during a pre-match media briefing at the Ahmadu Bello Stadium, Kaduna.
Musa, who said Obi will henceforth captain the team, also assured the new captain of all the needed support to succeed.
“I want to announce now that from today, John Obi Mikel is our new captain,” Musa said at the Eagles’ press conference, yesterday ahead of today’s AFCON 2017 qualifier against Egypt.
Musa was flanked by interim manager, Samson Siasia and Mikel Obi during his announcement at the Ahmadu Bello Stadium.
Former Nigeria manager, Sunday Oliseh, in October last year appointed the CSKA Moscow winger, Ahmed Musa as the new captain of the national team, saying he appointed Musa as captain because he “is not thinking of retirement”.
“There is no captaincy tussles … For Nigeria going forward, I need a player who is regular in the team and it is Ahmed Musa, who did a great job in Tanzania under very difficult circumstances”.
“He (Musa) is the captain of the team, not somebody who is thinking of retirement. A captain has to lead by example. We are not here to build stars. If you don’t conform to what I am trying there has been a new government and the President has picked new ministers. And that is what I have also done,” he said.
Source: All Africa