Flying Eagles to Camp in Australia for World Cup
Written by Taiwo Adediran on March 25, 2015
Nigeria’s national U20 team, the Flying Eagles is contemplating a training camp in Australia to enable them adapt to conditions in New Zealand where the FIFA U 20 World Cup will be staged in May.
Flying Eagles coach, Manu Garba, said yesterday that he settled for Australia because its weather is very similar to that of New Zealand. “Where we plan to camp has to be a place that shares same weather with New Zealand and that place is Australia,”Garba said after he led the team to the National Stadium Abuja, where a reception was held for them by the National Sports Commission (NSC) following their victory at the Africa Youth Championship in Senegal.
As a country located in the Southern Hemisphere, New Zealand will be experiencing winter during the period of the tournament. Nigeria will contend for quarter finals slot with Brazil, North Korea and Hungary in a tough Group E in NewPlymouth. Manu similarly disclosed that the team will embark on a 10-day recess before regrouping with 35 players.
He similarly told reporters that he intended to strengthen his team for the World Cup by bringing in new players.
The expanded list will accommodate the likes Kelechi Iheanacho, Isaac Success, Musa Yahaya, Wilfred Ndidi, Daddy Moses and Chidiebere Nwakali.
Ndidi, Nwakali, Success, Iheanacho and Yahaya were in the Golden Eaglets team that Garba groomed for the FIFA U 17 World Cup in United Arab Emirates in 2013 where they beat Mexico 3-0 to secure Nigeria a historic fourth U17 title.
“Yahaya got injured against Ghana in a friendly match before Senegal 2015. There is no automatic slot for the invited players as they must display other players on ground, “Garba insisted.
The NSC Director General Hon Gbenga Elegbeleye, who received team, said the current side was the best African team he had seen in the last 20 years and is a group that is capable of winning the first World Cup for Africa. ” I will not be surprised if you win the U20 World Cup in New Zealand because this is a team that is brimming with talent in all departments, “Elegbeleye said.