Beat Argentina for us, Brazilians beg Eagles
The Super Eagles of Nigeria have received the full backing of Brazillians in their bid to record a first-ever World Cup win over the La Albiceleste of Argentina when both teams square off in their final Group F match at the ongoing Brazil 2014.
The Eagles’ stay in Campinas, on the outskirts of Sao Paulo, has turned out to be one of the best decisions taken by the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) for Mundial 2014, as inhabitants as well as government officials and club owners of the area have been pouring out to catch a glimpse of the Nigerian side and to show their support.
On Wednesday evening the Mayor of Campinas, Donas Donizete, visited the team’s hotel, with top government officials after dinner to felicitate with the squad. Before then, the owner of the oldest and famous club in Campinas, which incidentally owns the Estadio Brinco de Ouro da Princesa, the pitch where the Eagles have been training, visited the team during their evening training session.
The Club President, Alvaro Negrao, said he came to wish the team well and made a special request for the Super Eagles to beat Argentina in their last group game. “The whole of Brazil will be cheering you on in that game”, he said. He thereafter presented players and officials of the Nigerian side with green jerseys, which incidentally is the colour of the Guarani Football Club, which was founded in 1911.
In his address, the Campinas Mayor thanked Nigeria for choosing the city which is home to over one million people as their camp base. He said he foresees Nigeria going all the way but said he would be torn between his love for Nigeria and his home country Brazil if both countries were to meet in the course of the championship.
In a symbolic gesture he brought an African brother to tell the story of how several Nigerians through slave trade helped build Campinas and several other cities across Brazil, thanking them for their heroics of yesteryears.
He then presented the Nigerian side with beautiful flowers and an encased World Cup football that were received by team skipper, Joseph Yobo from a beautiful damsel that came with the Mayor, who left many players and officials mouth agape. “It’s our own way of showing you and the other country that chose Campinas as their team base, that we love you and we hope you go all the way and do your country and Campinas proud.”
Also on Thursday all the players and officials completed their accreditation process for the World Cup in the presence of top FIFA officials. The team was also taken through grills on new goal line technology, match fixing, security, media responsibilities and general conduct in an event that lasted for about two hours.
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