Coach Salisu Yusuf has said Nigeria will have to win their next game on Saturday against Guinea if they hope to go past the group stage of the WAFU Cup after they barely survived against Mali today.
The Eagles recorded a scrappy 0-0 draw with Mali in a Group A clash in Cape Coast, but they were far from their best as they failed to create any clear-cut chance with the star players lethargic and failing to shine.
And like it was against Sierra Leone on Monday, goalkeeper and skipper Ikechukwu Ezenwa had to twice come to the rescue of the team with top-class saves in the second half.
Yusuf admitted his team did not produce their ‘A’ game, but also said they have to win their next two games to go far in the sub-regional tournament.
”We couldn’t play up to our standard although the team defended very well,” said the coach in a post-match interview.
“We will work hard to win our next game because to qualify you need to beat the other teams. That’s the mindset- to be able to win our next game and the last game.”
They battle Guinea on Saturday, before they take on hosts Ghana in a final Group A match on Monday.