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22.01.2024, 07:50
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Nigeria vs Guinea-Bissau: Crucial Clash in the 2023 Africa Cup of Nations Group Stage

Nigeria vs Guinea-Bissau: Crucial Clash in the 2023 Africa Cup of Nations Group Stage

In their final group stage match of the 2023 Africa Cup of Nations, Nigeria's Super Eagles are set to face off against Guinea-Bissau.

As three-time champions of Africa, Nigeria currently shares the top spot in Group A with Equatorial Guinea, both teams having equal points. A draw or win against their West African opponents is crucial for Nigeria to confirm their position in the last 16 without depending on other results.

Guinea-Bissau, also known as the Wild Dogs, face a slim chance of progressing further in the tournament. Despite a potential victory over Nigeria, their previous two losses with six goals conceded put them in a precarious position.

Match Preview

Under José Peseiro's management, the Super Eagles are deemed favorites for this match, thanks to their squad's talent and current form. Historically, Nigeria has a superior record against Guinea-Bissau, winning two out of their three previous encounters.

Nigeria enters this match in slightly better form, having secured two victories in their last six games, compared to Guinea-Bissau's single win in their recent six matches.

What to Expect

Nigeria is expected to adopt a more offensive strategy than their cautious play against Ivory Coast, likely leading to greater ball possession. Peseiro's tactical formation, whether he maintains the 3-4-3 or opts for a different setup, aims to leverage Nigeria's expansive playstyle to dismantle Baciro Candé's team.

As the 2013 AFCON champions, Nigeria has shown impressive attacking stats, leading Group A with 15 shots. They are anticipated to maintain this attacking momentum.

Despite their initial setbacks, Equatorial Guinea remains a formidable opponent, having previously defeated Nigeria in the qualification round. Their third-highest shot count in the group suggests they will challenge the Nigerian defense.

Confirmed Team News

Alhassan Yusuf of Royal Antwerp, suffering a muscle injury since the match against Equatorial Guinea, will not feature in this game. Alongside him, Zaidu Sanusi and William Troost-Ekong had separate training sessions, indicating potential concerns.

Key Players to Watch

Victor Osimhen (Nigeria): The Napoli forward, though not at his peak in the tournament, remains Nigeria's prime goal-scoring threat.

  • Ola Aina (Nigeria): The Nottingham Forest right-back stands out in defense and will be pivotal in defensive solidity and offensive support.
  • Mama Baldé (Guinea-Bissau): As a key player for the Wild Dogs, his attacking prowess will be crucial for Guinea-Bissau.
  • Alfa Semedo (Guinea-Bissau): Semedo's role in orchestrating attacks makes him a player to watch, with impressive stats in key passes and long balls.

Venue and Kickoff

The game is scheduled at Stade Félix Houphouët-Boigny, with a kickoff time of 18:00 Nigerian time.

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