Super Eagles rejoicing after knocking out favourites, Cote d’Ivoire from AFCON
By Onwuka Nzeshi, Chuks Okocha and Duro Ikhazuagbe
Following Super Eagles' brilliant display against the Elephants of Cote d'Ivoire, that earned then a semi final ticket at the on going African Cup of Nations in South Africa, President Goodluck Jonathan and other well meaning Nigerians, have congratulated the team coached by Stephen Keshi.
In a statement released by the Special Adviser to the President on Media and Publicity, Reuben Abati, the president praised the team for their masterly performance and superlative performance.
The statement reads: “President Jonathan thanks the Super Eagles for their masterly and superlative performance in the just-concluded AFCON encounter with CIV.
“President Jonathan says to the Super Eagles now is the time to really begin to soar like the Super Eagles that they are.”
The statement continued saying, “President Jonathan joins all Nigerians in celebrating today’s victory by the Super Eagles of Nigeria.”
The Super Eagles against all odds beat a star-studded Cote d’Ivoire team to reach the semi final stages of Africa’s premiere football spectacle, the Cup of Nations.
Answering questions on whether president Jonathan watches Nigeria’s matches at the tournament, Abati responded saying, “Yes, President Jonathan watched the match. He watched all the other matches too.”
In his reaction, the Speaker of the House of Representatives, Hon. Aminu Tambuwal hailed the Super Eagles over the victory against the Cote d’Ivoire in the quarter finals of the ongoing Africa Cup of Nations taking place in South Africa.
In a statement signed by his Special Adviser on Media and Public Affairs, Malam Imam Imam, Tambuwal said the fighting spirit shown by the Eagles would no doubt lead the team to lift the trophy.
He said Sunday's victory was all the more sweet because the players not only won the match, they did so convincingly by controlling the play and neutralising the so-called big name players in the Ivorien team.
According to him, the unity of purpose shown by the team only reaffirmed the notion that when all hands are on deck, achieving a common objective will be easier than expected.
Tambuwal urged Nigerians to intensify their prayers for the team and their handlers until the trophy is won and brought home to Nigeria.
In a related development, the Deputy Speaker, House of Representatives, Hon. Emeka Ihedioha also hailed the fighting spirit of the team.
The deputy speaker urged the team not to rest on their oars given the semi final task ahead.
He congratulated Nigerians on the victory and urged continued support for the team.
The Minister of Sports and Chairman of the National Sports Commission (NSC), Mallam Bolaji Abdullahi, praised Nigeria’s Super Eagles for displaying unusual grit, determination and brilliance in the defeat of the Elephants of Cote’ d’Ivoire in the quarter finals of the ongoing Cup of Nations tournament in South Africa.
Abdullahi said the Super Eagles rose to the occasion and displayed the true Nigerian spirit of never giving up, adding that with the victory, the team has shown that it is still a force to be reckoned with in African football.
He urged the team to maintain the same standard and focus on their next match against the Eagles of Mali.
“I have no doubt that with the level of play I saw today, they have the capacity to get to the final of the tournament and even win the cup.
"I urge the team to remain focused and disciplined. I congratulate the players and technical team for the excellent performance,” Abdullahi said.
While the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) described the Super Eagles' victory over the Elephants of Cote d'Ivoire as a good omen and a sign that the nation will soon surmount all its challenges under the present dispensation.
PDP National Publicity Secretary, Chief Olisa Metuh, in a statement Sunday said the party was overjoyed that the players did not let Nigerians down, adding that the victory was an indication that Nigeria is already coming out of the woods in all spheres of life.
The party said the victory over the Elephants, who had in the past stopped the Eagles in the tournament, was an indication that nothing is impossible for Nigeria and that the doors have been opened for the nation to achieve other goals.
"The victory of the Super Eagles is a good omen. It is a sign of good things to come. The PDP sees it as a sign of a new beginning. It shows that we, as a nation can surmount all our problems. It is an indication that there is nothing impossible and that collectively we will overcome all the challenges we are facing as a nation. We will surmount all of them the way we surmounted the Elephants," he said.
Stating that the victory did not come to it as a surprise, the party called on Nigerians to always believe in the potential