Despite being without some of his key players for the friendly game between Nigeria and Cameroon, Super Eagles coach Gernot Rohr will be aiming for his third win in four games against Cameroon on Friday.
The Eagles will be without Napoli striker Victor Osimhen, Simy Nwankwo, Leon Balogun, Semi Ajayi, Tyronne Ebuehi, Zaidu Sanusi, Ola Aina, Kenneth Omeruo and Kevin Akpoguma.
The game, billed for the Wiener Neustadt stadium in Vienna, will see both fierce rivals clash for the first time in two years.
Rohr’s Eagles have faced Cameroon thrice and twice they were on the winning side, with the latest coming in the quarter-finals of the 2019 AFCON tournament, a 3-2 triumph.
Overall, the Eagles are unbeaten in their last six matches against the Indomitable Lions and last lost to the Cameroonians at the 2000 AFCON final on penalties.
Now, Franco-German Rohr will be eager to make it three wins in a row for his side, having beaten Benin Republic and Lesotho in their final games of the 2021 Africa Cup of Nations qualifiers.
Ahead of the game, Rohr said he was satisfied with the sessions he had with his players and insisted the match against Cameroon was an opportunity to evaluate the new players.
“This friendly against Cameroon is an interesting game because we are going to have some of the new players, since some of our regular players will not be available due to injuries, and it is not easy to have everybody at this period because it is also the off season period,” Rohr said after Tuesday’s training session.
“It is a big test and an opportunity to test the new players.
“Of course, we are not going to play for the result in Cameroon in Austria, but it’s an opportunity to see our boys and see something different with our systems against a very good team that will host the next Africa Cup of Nations.”
Paul Onuachu, who recently emerged best player and top scorer in Belgium, will be hoping to continue his scoring form for the Eagles, having netted in his last two games for the three-time African champions against Benin Republic and Lesotho.
“My main aim is to help the team by scoring goals but I need the trust of everyone to achieve this,” Onuachu said.
Moses Simon, who scored against the Lions in their 2018 World Cup qualifier in Cameroon, said the Eagles were prepared for the clash.
“Cameroon will not be easy, but we are ready for them,” the FC Nantes winger said.
The game will also see the team’s vice captain William Troost-Ekong earn his 40th cap for the Eagles. The Watford defender has scored twice in 39 games for Rohr’s side.
The two teams will also have a rematch on June 8 at the same venue.