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LIVE: ALGERIA V NIGERIA. ALL THE BUILDUP TO THE BIG GAME

Sunday, 14 July 2019

/ by Colin
Super Eagles



8:58 National anthems are done, so are pre match formalities. And so I say, thank you for staying with me
Enjoy the game!

8:40 Warm ups are done. Teams have headed back into the dressing room. Algeria players got huge cheers when their lineup was read out. The Nigerians, apart from Ahmed Musa, barely got anything

8:10 The teams are coming out for the warmups now. First Algeria, then Nigeria. Alloy Agu, the Super Eagles goalkeeper trainer gives a big wave to the Nigeria fans in the stands and they respond with a huge cheer
The Super Eagles emerge from the tunnel to a big cheer. But the Algerians get an even bigger one. They have way more fans in the stands. They are the home team on paper. And it’s the same on the stands

7:30 The teams have arrived in the stadium

6:40 The Super Eagles have left their hotel and are on their way to the stadium.
For the superstitious amongst us, they will play today in their green away jersey. Make of that what you will


6:20 Dr Wiebe Boer is supporting the Super Eagles all the way from Trinidad and Tobago with his jersey on. Where are you supporting from?

And Gernot Rohr is naming an unchanged lineup from the one which beat South Africa in the last game. Do you like it?


6:11 Time for the ball kids to do their rehearsals


5:50 it’s just over three hours to the game. There are more media folks at the stadium than fans


4:00 Media folks are very upset. Their entrance gate was changed with no prior information. Now, journalists have to walk over half an hour, some lugging heavy equipment, to get to the Media Centre. In this heat! There are some very sweaty, sun-burned, angry people about

3:40 Time to stop and get some Papa John’s Chicken Wings before departure to the stadium 


3:00 In case you hadn’t heard, the Algerian military offered 6 military planes to airlift fans to Cairo for the game. This is in addition to the thousands who will be making the trip via chartered Air Algerie flights. Looks like Nigeria fans will be outnumbered. But will they be out-sung?

2:30PM One thing that has been very noticeable is that the Super Eagles players have been off social networks since last night. Only one player - and I won’t say who - updated his Snapchat late last night and that was just listening to music.
On WhatsApp, there has been no status updates. 

2PM An early picture of the stadium and this is what it looks like. No indication of the din and bedlam that is just hours away now



1PM: As is to be expected for a game that is now 8 hours away, everywhere is quiet but we will bring you some pictures from Nigeria training on Saturday


Super Eagles training at the Aero Sports Complex in Cairo on Saturday afternoon



It is semifinal day at the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations, and Nigeria’s Super Eagle go up against Algeria’s Fennecs in what should be a battle for the ages. 

A budding Nigeria side who have already despatched Cameroon and made light work of South Africa, now face arguably their biggest test of the tournament so far, a resurgent, organized and very disciplined Algeria side who are yet to taste defeat and conceded only their first goal of the tournament against Cote d’Ivoire in the quarterfinals.

The winners, of course, will play for the big prize. Nigeria are seeking a fourth title. Algeria, only their second. Both sides won their first ever titles against each other. Nigeria beating Algeria 3-0 in Lagos to claim their first win in 1980, and the Algerians returning the favour in 1994 via a 1-0 win in Algiers.

Recenteetings have gone the way of the Super Eagles, who have six wins from their last eight meetings.

Kickoff is at 8PM Nigeria time from the Cairo International Stadium. But we will have over eight hours of buildup here on ColinUdoh.com so feel free to chirp in on Twitter (see what I did there), Facebook and Instagram.


So away we go, then.


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