International

Nigeria coach alerts players

2015-11-11 13:27
Sunday Oliseh is set to take over as Nigeria head coach (File)

Abuja - Nigeria coach Sunday Oliseh has warned his players not to see Swaziland as a pushover, as they prepare for a World Cup qualifier on Lombambo's artificial pitch.

Swaziland are ranked 130th in the FIFA world rankings, while three-time African champions Nigeria are 59th.

But Oliseh, who has been receiving treatment for a viral infection that kept him away from his duties, said that counted for nothing because of the conditions and their record.

"It won't be easy playing against them, especially on their artificial pitch," he told reporters in Abuja.

"They shocked Guinea and we got our wake-up call with Tanzania," he said, referring to the Super Eagles' goalless draw in the Africa Cup of Nations qualifier in Dar es Salaam in September.

"But the boys are in high spirits and I'm optimistic."

As well as his own health concerns, Oliseh has had to grapple with the delayed arrival of his overseas-based stars due to flight hitches.

But he said the team's recent friendlies against DR Congo and Cameroon should stand the team in good stead.

"Our recent tour in Belgium should be good enough preparation for us," he said.

Watford striker Odion Ighalo said he will prepare for the game as he would for a fixture in the English Premier League.

Ighalo, who has scored seven goals in the English Premier League, said no team in world football should be under-estimated.

"There are no small countries in football and so I will prepare to play against Swaziland as I would against Arsenal," said the striker, who has scored twice for his country.

"I will give 101% whenever I play for my country."

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