September 20, 2021

Super Eagles test negative for coronavirus ahead of Sierra Leone showdown

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The technical crew and the national team players were subjected to medical checks in Benin two days ago

Nigeria players and coaches have tested negative for coronavirus ahead of Friday’s Africa Cup of Nations qualifying fixture against Sierra Leone.

The Super Eagles were subjected to coronavirus tests on Wednesday afternoon as part of health guidelines to contain the spread of the virus.

The results come as good news for coach Gernot Rohr, who now has 23 players at his disposal for the intriguing encounter at the Samuel Ogbemudia Stadium.

Nigeria have made a strong start to the Afcon qualifiers, and they will aim to stretch their unbeaten record in Group L against John Keister’s side.

The three-time African champions sit at the top of their group with six points from two matches while Sierra Leone languish at the bottom with just one point after the same number of games.

The Leone Stars’ solitary point came after a 1-1 draw against Lesotho before they suffered a 1-0 loss against Benin.

Nigeria coach Rohr has stated that they are aiming to secure qualification for the 2022 Afcon finals in Cameroon in the double-header fixtures this month.

“We do not in any way underrate the Sierra Leoneans that we play over two legs within these four days, but we have our focus and objective for the matches,” the German tactician said.

“We want to win both games so we can have the ticket and be able to be little more relaxed for the final games.

“You know that next year, we also have the World Cup qualifiers to focus on. It is better to get the Africa Cup of Nations job behind us now.”

His Sierra Leone counterpart, Keister is hoping to cause an upset in Benin on Friday as the Leone Stars chase their third win against their West African rivals.

“I want the nation to be positive about the outcome from the first match,” he said. “The team’s rebuilding process starts now, and I’ve put together some of the best players to upset the Nigerians.”

Nigeria travel to Freetown for the reverse outing against Sierra Leone at the National Stadium Freetown on Tuesday, November 17.