Rigobert Song says he is not convinced the Super Eagles are good enough to win the tournament

CAMERONIAN head coach Rigobert Song has declared that he is not convinced that the Super Eagles are good enough to win the ongoing 2023 Africa Cup of Nations despite knocking his team out of the tournament yesterday.


Last night, the Eagles advanced into the quarterfinals of the continental showpiece beating neighbours the Indomitable Lions 2-0 at the Felix Houphouet Boigny Stadium in Abidjan. Thanks to goals in each half from Ademola Lookman, the Eagles sent the Cameroonians packing and are now set to face the Black Panthers of Angola in the quarter final.


Speaking at the post-match conference, Mr Song said he is not convinced that the Super Eagles are good enough to win the tournament. He also pointed out that the Indomitable Lions did not lose because they were of inferior quality to the Super Eagles yesterday but due to their inexperience.


Asked if Nigeria can lift the cup, Mr Song said: "Not really. I think they were not better than us but they did what they were expected to do. You know in football, you have maturity. When you take these players, you know them better than I do and today they did what they were expected to do.


"Maybe we were those who gave them the opportunity to do more but it is my belief that individually, they are a very good team because they know themselves and they have been playing together for some time and tonight I think they could have done much better."


Nigeria's Super Eagles are seeking to win African Cup of Nations for the first time since 2013 and the fourth time in the nation's history. Last night's result means the Eagles have now beaten the Indomitable Lions three times consecutively, having defeated them in the 2004 and 2019 tournaments.


Yesterday, despite having more ball possession, Cameroon did nothing of note in the encounter, creating zero clear-cut chances and not even registering one shot on target. Nigeria had three more shots on target, won two corner-kicks, forced goalkeeper Fabrice Ondoa to one more save and scored two goals.


Mr Song said he believed that the Indomitable Lions showed youthful inexperience and paid too much respect to Nigeria. A former Liverpool and West Ham defender, Mr Song  highlighted the fact that his players gave away the two goals Nigeria scored.


He added: “My analysis is that we were not bad overall but you can see that I have the youngest team currently in competition and there are players who we are discovering.  It is we who give the adversary the opportunity to put us in difficulty, it’s part of the game.


“I’ve said it in the past that today I’m rebuilding and it is by making these mistakes that we will grow. It’s football. The African cup is a competition that is played on all levels, on a technical, tactical but also mental level.


“My players, I had the impression that they were afraid to express themselves and let themselves go. It’s part of the stress. I don’t know why we were too withdrawn.”