Fans anxious as Eagles await last 16 foes


•Burkina Faso battle Gabon in knockout stage

 Super Eagles could face defending champions Algeria, Tunisia or Malawi in their round of 16 tie at the ongoing Africa Cup of Nations in Cameroon on January 23 at the Stade Roumdé Adjia in Garoua, a situation that’s making several fans of the team anxious.

The Eagles are through to the round of 16 as table toppers from Group D and will face opponents who finish in third-place from Group B, E and F.

The three-time African champions may face Malawi, who played out a goalless draw against Senegal in their final group game on Monday to finish third in Group B, while Nigeria’s other possible opponents will be decided on Thursday (today).

Algeria are currently bottom of Group E and are at the risk of crashing out of the competition as they face their toughest test of the tournament when they come up against group leaders Ivory Coast in their last group game on Thursday (today).

The Desert Foxes are without a win and a goal in the group after playing a draw against Sierra Leone in their opening game before their shock 1-0 loss to Equatorial Guinea on match-day two.

Should the Algerians get a win against the Ivoirians and Equatorial Guinea play a draw against Sierra Leone, the Foxes will automatically book a spot in the round of 16, while the Eagles could face Ivory Coast, who will fall to third position.

In Group F, Tunisia, who have won one and lost one of their first two group games, are currently third on the log with three points and will face debutants Gambia, who are top of the table with four points and will need at least a point to sail through to the next round.

However, a win for the Eagles of Carthage will see them qualify directly to the round of 16 and the Eagles may have to play the Gambia.

Reacting to the development, fans are undecided on who they want the Eagles to play.

“I’ll love to see the Eagles play against Algeria or Tunisia if both North Africans qualify because to be the best, you have to beat the best and a win for the Eagles against such quality opponents will further strike fear in the heart of their competition,” a football enthusiast Joshua Akinfe told The PUNCH.

“I will go for Malawi,” Tijani Adedamola reacted on Twitter. “I’m being strategic and I want us to stay away from the big teams for now,” he added.

@footiedami on Twitter wrote, “I will go for Algeria. To be crowned champions, you’ve to beat the best.”

In another round of 16 pairings, Burkina Faso who finished as the second placed team in Group A behind hosts Cameroon will face Gabon who finished second in Group C.(Punch)

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