Legendary Algerian ex international, Lakhdar Belloumi, has tipped his countrymen to pick all three points when the Fennecs play Super Eagles in a 2018 FIFA World Cup qualifier on November 12 in Uyo.
The 1981 African Footballer of the Year who played at Espana ’82 and Mexico ’86 World Cups for Algeria told FIFA.com yesterday that the Fennecs are capable of repeating the feat of 35 years ago when they defeated Nigeria home and away to earn their first Mundial ticket.
“Algeria have a great footballing history. We’ve defeated Nigeria more than once. We beat them on their own patch in 1981 and in Libya in 1982. My message to Riyad Mahrez and Co, therefore, is that winning on 12 November is certainly not impossible,” Belloumi stressed with confidence.
“We will win if we impose our style of play. Our team is powerful and united, and with a little bit of desire and heart, we can return home with three points in the bag,” the 57 year-old former star restated.
While most ball pundits believe it is the Algerians that will be under pressure in Uyo due to the draw game they played with Cameroun in their opening Match-day 1 of the qualifiers, Belloumi insisting that the Super Eagles are “the ones under pressure.”
“On the contrary, I believe the Nigerians will be the ones under pressure as they’re at home and playing in front of their own fans,” he said with conviction.
Belloumi described Algeria’s 1-1 draw with Cameroun in Blida as “a misstep” considering that they have found the Indomitable Lions difficult to play against in competitive matches.
“Our team is very strong. For me, the draw against Cameroun was just a misstep. And we mustn’t forget that Cameroun have a great team and a long World Cup history, and that we’ve never beaten them in an official match. Let’s put that slip-up behind us and concentrate on picking up three points in Nigeria,” stressed the Algerian former super star.
The Super Eagles are leading the Group B of Russia 2018 qualifiers with three points as a result of the 2-1 away victory recorded against Zambia in Ndola early this month.