The Super Eagles will play a friendly match against Guinea’s Syli Nationale in Abu Dhabi on Monday, according to a statement by Ademola Olajire, Director of Communications at the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF).
The statement, made available to the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Saturday in Abuja, indicated that the friendly match was part of the Super Eagles’ preparation ahead of a feast of Guinean attrition in the group phase at the 34th Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) finals in Cote d’Ivoire.
“Head Coach José Peseiro has the opportunity to put to the crucible different patterns and tactics against quality opposition.
“The friendly game is coming only seven days before the three-time champions’ opening game against Equatorial Guinea’s Nzalang National inside Abidjan’s Stade Alassane Ouattara,” it said.
NAN reports that the Super Eagles are in Group A of the four-week, 24-nation finals alongside host nation Cote d’Ivoire and Africa’s other two Guinean nations – Equatorial Guinea and Guinea Bissau.
The Syli Nationale was one of Africa’s strongest teams in the 1970s and 1980s, winning the silver medals at the 1976 AFCON in Ethiopia.
They gave the so-called big teams a good run for their money at the Africa Cup and in FIFA World Cup qualifying matches.
The Eagles pipped Syli Nationale 1-0 in a group phase encounter at the 2019 AFCON in Egypt.
Far back in 1981, Syli Nationale held the Eagles to a 1-1 draw in a FIFA World Cup qualifying match in Conakry, and in Lagos, Nigeria won with a long-range Henry Nwosu strike to the far corner of Abdoulaye Keita’s goal.
“Monday’s encounter has been scheduled for the Bani Yas Stadium.
“It is sure to slightly open a window into the mind of Coach Peseiro and how he intends to line up his army when Africa’s flagship football championship begins next weekend,” it added.
The 2023 AFCON which kicks off on Jan. 13 will end on Feb. 11.