Flying Eagles head coach Manu Garba says the Nigeria under-17 side are prepared to hit the ground running when they visit Tanzania in an African Youth Championship (AYC) second round first leg qualifier on Sunday.
The six-time champions lost to Benin Republic in a warm-up match played in Cotonou last weekend, but Garba insists his side have decided to let bygones be, as they head to the East African nation to flag off their bid to secure a place in Senegal next year.
“We were unlucky, but we have put that behind us and the boys know what is expected of them against Tanzania,” Garba, who led the Golden Eaglets to victory at the 2013 Fifa World Cup in the UAE, told Cafonline.com.
“We would do everything within our capacity to win in Tanzania and I’m very positive about this.”
Most of the players from the under-17 World Cup-winning team will be hoping their promotion to the under-20 cadet witnesses another successful outcome under the guidance of the former Nigeria international.
However, they haven’t racked up much of match appearances, as a host of the players have just finalised moves to Europe. Garba believes “the players are in excellent condition”.
“We have conditioned the players well and that was why we requested that those who are in Europe should join the camp on time,” he said.
Garba added: We are prepared to face Tanzania and we already have our report on the Tanzanians and we are studying how they play. The information and technical report we have on them would give us a clear picture about how we are going to play against them. Our priority is to win.”
The match kicks off by 4pm local time, (2pm Nigerian time) at the 60,000-capacity National Stadium in Dar er Salam on Sunday.
Tanzania knocked neighbours Kenya out of the first round qualifiers on penalties, after playing out a goalless draw in either legs; while Nigeria were drawn bye.