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U-20 AFCON: Third place is as good as final for Flying Eagles — Bosso

FLYING Eagles head coach Ladan Bosso has claimed that the team will have had a good tournament if they secure the bronze medal at the U-20 Africa Cup of Nations in Egypt today.

Nigeria face Tunisia this afternoon at the Cairo International Stadium in the third-place match of the tournament after both sides lost their semi-finals earlier in the week.

Bosso’s side lost 1-0 in the semi-finals to The Gambia at the Cairo International Stadium on Monday night, with Tunisia falling 3-0 to Senegal on the same day.

“It was unfortunate we lost the semi-finals and now we will play the third place match,” Bosso told journalists at his pre-match press conference.

“The third place is as good as the final. We believe if we get it right we will take something home and I believe we can put smiles on the faces of football-loving Nigerians.

“Nevertheless it is always believed that second best is not good enough but we have to fight for third place.”

The record seven-time champions of the tournament have earned their ticket to the FIFA U-20 World Cup in Indonesia later this year alongside The Gambia, Senegal and Tunisia, and Bosso is pleased with that achievement.

“The most important thing is the target given to us was to first qualify the team to the World Cup which we achieved,” said Bosso, who also took the Flying Eagles to the FIFA U-20 World Cup in 2007 when they reached the quarter-finals.

“We wanted to get something additional but fortunately we didn’t get it right.

“We had our mistakes but I understand the feelings of some sections of Nigerians will not be comfortable with it.

“We lost to The Gambia, not that they were better than us because we should have sealed that game in the beginning.

“Nevertheless the way we prepared for the Gambian team is the same way we will prepare for Tunisia with some adjustments to get the win.”

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Naija Times