The Stephen Keshi-led Super Eagles team, which has been placed in Group F along with Argentina, Iran and Bosnia & Herzegovina in the 2014 World Cup, may not go beyond the second round.
This is the view of the majority of respondents that took part in PUNCH ONLINE EXTRA’s recent poll, with the question, ‘With the quality of players in the Super Eagles World Cup list, how far do you think the team will go?’
Respondents were presented with three choices – Second round, Quarter-finals and Semi-finals.
Considering the other teams in the group, particularly Iran and Bosnia & Herzegovina, it is easy to believe that Nigeria has a strong chance of proceeding beyond the first round of the competition.
But the outcome of the friendly warm-up matches, especially that against the US, on Saturday, which Nigeria lost 1-2, seems to have raised some concerns.
Five hundred and fifteen respondents took part in the poll.
The poll shows that 237 respondents, representing 46 per cent, believe Nigeria won’t go past the second round.
On the other hand, 124 respondents, which represent 24 per cent, have great faith in Keshi’s 23-man squad to get to the quarterfinals stage.
Conversely, 154 respondents, representing 30 per cent, are optimistic that the Super Eagles will get to the semifinals of the global sporting event.
A former international, Edema Fuludu, recently said, “From the friendlies I have seen, I do realise that it has been difficult for us to win a non-African side up till now.
“So, if we are going into the tournament we’ve not won any, I think that it is very imperative we win against Iran.”
Another former Super Eagles skipper, Austin Jay Jay Okocha, expressing his thoughts on Nigeria’s performances in the warm-up games, said more needed to be done to fortify the team’s midfield, hinting that a playmaker in his mould, was still sorely missed in the team.
Understandably, Nigeria’s Super Eagles keeper, Vincent Enyeama, along with his colleagues, believes the team will go far in the tournament.
Meanwhile, Senate President, David Mark, has been appointed by President Goodluck Jonathan to lead a high-powered Federal Government delegation to Brazil for the World Cup