Nigeria’s Eagles Set For Italy Test In London

The Super Eagles of Nigeria, who arrived in London Sunday evening will have their status as African champions tested today, Monday, 18 November, when they battle Italy in an important grade A friendly match.
The match is scheduled for Craven Cottage the home ground of Premier League club, Fulham at 7:45pm.
The Eagles defeated Ethiopia 2-0 in their last World Cup qualifier in Calabar on Saturday to become Africa’s first team to book a ticket for the Brazil 2014 World Cup.
They face an Italy side who were equally impressive in qualifying for the World Cup, as Cesare Prandelli’s team also went unbeaten with six wins and four draws from their 10 fixtures in Group B of the European qualifiers.
Italy were given a stern test on Friday by Germany, who went in front at San Siro through Mats Hummels before AC Milan right-back Ignazio Abate earned his side a 1-1 draw to maintain Italy’s record of having not lost to the Germans since 1995.
Ahead of this match with Nigeria, Prandelli will be without Juventus defender Andrea Barzagli, who limped out of Friday’s clash with a thigh injury.
Mario Balotelli also has injury concerns, but the former Manchester City forward is looking forward to playing against Nigeria.
It was gathered that the Eagles arrived at the London Heathrow Airport at about 4:10pm London time, 5:10 pm Nigerian time and were checked into the Hilton Hotel in Cobham, by organisers of the friendly.
Media Officer of the team, Ben Alaiya said the team could not train on arrival in London because of the cold weather, but shifted their training to early Monday morning ahead of the game slated for the evening.
“All the players, led by Skipper Vincent Enyeama expressed confidence that they will give a good account of themselves in the friendly encounter.
“Sadly though, striker Victor Obinna Nsofor has been ruled out of the encounter due to the injury he suffered during the game against Ethiopia. However, he is here in London with the team”, Alaiya said.
Alaiya further said that a scan will be carried out on Monday by team medics to determine the extent of the injury.
Nsofor, however hopes to bounce back to action soon and regretted missing the friendly against Italy.
“I would have loved to play this game but there is nothing I can do now because of the injury”, Nsofor said.


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