World Cup: Nigeria has team spirit – Wenger
Arsenal manager, Arsene Wenger, has tipped Nigeria to reach the second round of the World Cup alongside Argentina in Group F, Goal reports.
The Frenchman feels the Super Eagles has something going for them this year – “team spirit” and a lack of big egos which has ensured for a united squad and differentiated the team from many African sides of the past.
He said Argentina should win the group which also has Iran and Bosnia-Herzegovina and that Nigeria should join the South Americans in the second round.
“I think that Nigeria might qualify for the second stage,” Wenger wrote in his Eurosport World Cup preview.
“The team really made a good impression on me during the African Cup of Nations. Super Eagles seem to have a really good team spirit, which is not always easy for African teams.
“Nigeria has less star players. They have a real team, and it’s been a while since that happened for them,” Wenger said of Stephen Keshi’s team.
On Argentina, the Frenchman expects the two-time world champions to do well playing in South America where they would be buoyed by the rivalry with neighbours Brazil.
He also said that Alejandro Sabella has done better than Diego Maradona in his selection of a balanced side despite the array of impressive attacking talent at his disposal.
“Normally Argentina should qualify thanks to the team’s offensive potential. You might even say that Argentina has too many good players in attack,” Wenger wrote.
“It’s not easy to be a manager in Argentina, because it’s hard to build a balanced team without leaving some indisputable players off the field.
“Argentina has Higuain, Messi, Aguero, and Tevez, who didn’t even make the final squad. They have so many forwards; it will be very hard to keep a balanced team. It’s what happened in South Africa.
“Still, Sabella’s team seems more balanced than Maradona’s. They can’t make a mess of this World Cup; Argentina just can’t.
“The two main rivals in South America are Brazil and Argentina. There can’t be a World Cup in Brazil and Argentina be humiliated and not have a great tournament,” Wenger said.
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