The Imama Amapakabo tutored lads zoomed to the final round of the 3rd Africa U23 Cup of Nations qualifying series on Monday, beating Libya 4-0 on the back of a Victor Osimhen hat-trick at the Stephen Keshi Stadium in Asaba.
The North Africans won the first leg 2-0 in Ben Guerdane, Tunisia on Wednesday last week, and came fully prepared to defend their advantage. But Osimhen, alongside fellow U17 World Cup winners Kelechi Nwakali, Samuel Chukwueze and Orji Okonkwo bossed proceedings in a one–sided affair in the city that is fast turning to Nigeria’s football capital.
“Anyone that know me well will understand that am radical and stubborn to have belief in my ability and that of the team,” the 2015/16 Nigeria Professional Football League (NPFL) title winning coach with Enugu Rangers explained.
“Going to the first leg I knew nothing about the Libyan team. All I knew was that they play a 3-5-2 formation. I needed to fix people to a formation that suits them.”
“We travelled to Tunisia and tried our best. Unfortunately we didn’t have enough time to play together.”
“After we had seen them play, we were aware of their strengths and weaknesses. We sat down and played the video many times. The players can attest to it. I knew what their strong points was technically ahead of the second leg.
“We could have scored more than four goals. The major talking point is that we have qualified for the next round and achieved it in grand style. Kudos to the players for their efforts and victory.
The Dream Team VII will square up against Sudan in the final round of qualifiers in June, with the winner to be eligible for a place at the 3rd Africa U23 Cup of Nations in Egypt in November.