Photo: Golden Eaglets
FIFA Under-17 World Cup holders, Nigerian Golden Eaglets have arrived Santiago, capital city of Chile on Wednesday, reports THISDAY.
According to the report, the Eaglets came to Chile with a message to all the other teams in town for tournament: Golden Eaglets are in the South American nation to defend the title.
Speaking with the media on arrival, Coach Emmanuel Amuneke and striker Victor Osimhen were upbeat about the chances of the Nigeria successfully defending the trophy.
“We are here to defend the trophy,” said Amuneke. “We are here with new players who want to write their own history and we are looking forward to our first game against the United States of America, which is very important for us.”
Osimhen echoed the sentiment of Amuneke, adding that they have been psyched up for the expected challenges as the defending champions. “We are here to win,” said Osimhen who is Golden Eaglets’ top scorer with 39 goals in 71 cumulative international and local matches.”
Just as the coach said, we are here to write our own story as a team and players.”
Nigeria is one of Africa’s four flag bearers at the 16th edition of the FIFA U-17 World Cup finals, Chile 2015 scheduled to hold between October 17 and November 8.
The Golden Eaglets have won the competition a record four times with the last being two years ago in the United Arab Emirates (UAE).
Immediately after dinner at their Double Tree by Hilton Hotel in Santiago-Vitacura, where they are accommodated for their opening match against USA on October 17, Amuneke reminded his wards to focus attention on nothing but football as the team seeks a fifth U-17 world title.
Meanwhile, the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) has applauded the Embassy of Nigeria in Argentina for rallying behind the Golden Eaglets during their pre-World Cup preparation in Buenos Aires.
NFF’s Assistant Director (Technical), Siji Lagunju, on behalf of the federation, said the Nigerian Embassy led by Mr. Tiwalade Adelanwa as the deputy Head of Mission, contributed immensely to the Golden Eaglets’ successful stay in Buenos Aires.
Speaking on NFF’s website before Golden Eaglets’ departure to Santiago, Chile on Tuesday for the FIFA U-17 World Cup, Lagunju said matter-of-factly that the embassy staff, particularly, Mr. Elekwachi Ndubuisi, Mrs. Felicia Ezeorah and Mr. Abolaji Olawunmi were very impressive in discharge of their duties.
“I want to use this opportunity to thank the Nigerian Embassy officials here in Argentina. We were well received right from the first day, they were hospitable like true Nigerians.
“It was great the NFF brought us to Buenos Aires Football (BAF) to prepare for the World Cup which is a conducive environment that allows for maximum concentration. We are equally very grateful to the staff of BAF and the liaison official from Eurodata, Juan Partricio who were also wonderful during our stay in Buenos Aires.”