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Super Eagles touch down in Russia

The Super Eagles of Nigeria have touched down in Russia for the 2018 FIFA World Cup.

According to reports on the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) official Twitter handle, the players and their officials landed in their Essentuki base in the early hours of Tuesday.

The Super Eagles flew out of their Avita Resort in Bad Tatzmannsdorf, Austria, to Russia on Monday for the 21st FIFA World Cup finals – Nigeria’s sixth appearance in seven finals since making a memorable debut in the U.S. in 1994.

A picture of the players alighting from aircraft in a unique traditional outfit was also posted on the NFF Twitter page with a short tweet which read: “@FIFA World Cup. Welcome, NGA!”

The Super Eagles who are expected to have their first training session following their arrival on Tuesday were the last team in Group D to arrive in Russia for the tournament, with Argentina and Iceland jetting in on Saturday.

Croatia arrived in Russia on Monday.

Nigeria will take on Croatia on Saturday in their opening Group D fixture at the Kaliningrad Stadium.

Meanwhile, a cross-section of Nigerians have expressed hope that  the Super Eagles, would progress beyond the group stage at the 2018 FIFA World Cup in Russia.

A hair stylist  at Banex Plaza Wuse Abuja and die-hard Eagles supporter.Edoh Michaelb believed victory in their first match would be a morale booster
“For me, if we win our first match against Croatia, we stand a good chance of qualifying for the second round,”  he said.
One of Michael’s customers, who identified herself simply as Rose, supported his opinion, saying four points might be enough to qualify from the tough group.
“If Argentina picks maximum points, then a win and a draw could be good enough to send the second team through to the second round,” Rose said.
Two teams are expected to progress from the group stage from each of the eight groups.
On his part, Femi Alo, a software service provider, hoped that the Eagles would “get something” from the match against Croatia, even if it is a draw.
He argued that being the first match; both teams could be nervous and cagy, thereby being cautious.
“It will be nice to win the first match but at least even if we can get a draw, it won’ be bad. My own is that we should get something from the match as against a loss,” said Alo.
He, however, warned that the Super Eagles should be mindful of the calibre of players paraded by Croatia and approach the game with a good plan.
“They have big names such as Modric, Perisic, Rakitic, Mandzukic and Kovacic.
“We need to be careful and approach the game with caution. People are talking about Argentina but Croatia presents their own threat,” he advised.
Other respondents were optimistic about Nigeria’s chances of qualifying for the knock-out stage.
Many also appealed to fellow Nigerians and Eagles’ fans not to be discouraged by the dismal results recorded by the team during their pre-World Cup warm-up matches.
“We should not judge the team by friendly matches,” Ayanacho Chidi, a phone vendor, advised.
“Maybe they didn’t want to get injured or don’t want eyes to be on them,” he added.
In the buildup to the World Cup, Nigeria won two out of six build up matches against Argentina and Poland, but lost to Serbia, England and Czech Republic.
Nigeria also recorded a draw 1-1 with the Democratic Republic of Congo at the Adokiye Amiesimaka Stadium in Port Harcourt on May 28.NAN

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