WAFU Cup: Imama hopeful as Eagles tackle Sparrows again

Super Eagles B are primed to face the Sparrow Hawks of Togo on Sunday in both teams’ first match at the WAFU Cup of Nations in Thies, Senegal and Nigeria’s Head Coach is upbeat about the opportunity provided by a second meet within one week.

Coach Imama Amapakabo, who spoke to thenff.com at the team’s Le Saly Hotel base in Saly-Mbour, said the opportunity to meet the Togolese is cherished as it gives the opportunity to properly test his team’s level of improvement.

He said: “There’s nothing like revenge in football. My belief is that no two games that can be the same; once one game is over, it is gone. And so meeting Togo again is not really a case of getting the opportunity to revenge but an opportunity to check what lessons learnt from the previous encounter with that team.

“I can confidently say that we have learnt our lesson from what happened in Lome and that will definitely reflect in how we handle tomorrow’s (Sunday) game.

“Now we know them a lot better and they equally know us better than they did. The good thing is that we are meeting on a neutral ground and this gives both teams opportunity to play without any inhibition.”

Nigeria’s home-based senior players arrived in Saly via Dakar on Thursday for the 2nd WAFU-FOX Cup of Nations which began in the Senegalese city of Thies on Saturday.

The updated fixtures put Nigeria against Togo with kick off fixed for 7pm (6pm Nigerian time) at the Stade Lat Dior Thies.

Eagles suffered a 4-1 lashing by the Hawks in a 2020 African Nations Championship qualifying match in Lome last Sunday.

Nigerians expect the tables to turn and that is what is on offer from Amapakabo and the team captained by Mfon Udoh.

“We go into every game with the mindset to win and this will not be any different. We are a lot better than we were last week as a team. We are better physically and psychologically. I believe the players are in a better state of mind too to handle whatever comes up on the pitch.”