2026 WCQ: Are we going to see Super Eagles or Chicken on Sunday against Zimbabwe
As Our Boys play the Warriors of Zimbabwe in a FIFA World Cup qualifier match on Sunday, millions of football-crazy Nigerians are unsure which Eagles will come to work. Will it be the Super Eagles or Super Chicken?
Apart from beating countries with weak football pedigrees like Sao Tome and other countries with poor records in football, we have not seen the Super Eagles in many years.
The poor House of Eagles constructed by Pinnick Amaju and his site engineer Tunde Adelakun for eight years is only good enough for Nigerians born in the diaspora who chose to represent Nigeria because they could not make the team of their countries of birth.
Amaju’s House of Eagles built on sand is made worse by the terrible state of the football league.
This poor foundation is responsible for the anxiety we have each time Our Boys are playing and we constantly ask ourselves, are we going to see Super Eagles or Chickens?
The Eagles game against Zimbabwe at Stade Huye in Butare, Rwanda (due to a lack of Caf-approved venues in the Southern African nation) is a must-win especially with South Africa beating Benin Republic.
They need a quick recovery from a disappointing 1-1 draw at home to Lesotho in their opening match on Thursday.
“We had 76 percent of the ball possession against 24 percent [by Lesotho], the opponents only had two chances to score and scored a goal,” bemoaned Nigeria coach Jose Peseiro. “We had many chances to score. It was bad luck.”
He added, “I am sad of course, and a bit disappointed also. But my team tried to get the maximum points. I am sad because of the result but about the performance, Lesotho stayed behind all through for 90 minutes. They only came forward two or three times.”
Zimbabwe also failed to win their first game against Lesotho and Rwanda respectively and will be desperate to record their first victory in the qualification series.
The two nations have clashed seven times with Nigeria boasting a superior head-to-head record having won four, drawn 2, and lost once.
Our Boys are the heavy favourite heading into the clash not only because of their better head-to-head record but also because of the quality they have in their side as compared to their South African counterparts.
The Super Eagles are expected to dominate the game like they have always done against inferior oppositions like Zimbabwe.
While it is uncertain if José Peseiro will stick with his traditional 4-4-2, Nigeria will tend to stretch the Warriors' defence with the pace and trickery of the wingers.
Zimbabwe, must have taken a cue from Lesotho, so it is expected they will defend in numbers, hit on the counter, and exploit Super Eagles' set-piece weaknesses.
Nigeria will have to make do with Taiwo Awoniyi who would have been one of their difference makers going into the game while Luton-owned forward Admiral Muskwe who started the Warriors' barren draw against Rwanda could also miss out. If Super Eagles come to work, expect resounding victory but if it's Super Chicken, a draw will be worthy of celebration, while defeat is not impossible, after the King of Sports said ‘Impossible is Nothing’.
Africa WCQ Fixtures for Sunday
15:00: Burundi v Gabon
15:00: Mozambique v Algeria
15:00: Zimbabwe v Nigeria
18:00: Sierra Leone v Egypt
18:00: Sudan v DR Congo