Winning 2023 AFCON is not only about having good players – Amuneke Warns Super Eagles

The Super Eagles of Nigeria legend Emmanuel Amuneke has warned that having good players is not enough for Nigeria to win the 2023 Africa Cup of Nations in Cote d’Ivoire next year while also expecting Victor Osimhen to lead the team.

The three-time African champions won the continental showpiece have been continental showpiece in 1980, 1994 with their most recent success coming under the late Stephen Keshi in 2013 in South Africa.

Nigeria is drawn in Group A alongside host nation Cote d’Ivoire, Equatorial Guinea and Guinea-Bissau. They were knocked out of the last 16 at the last edition of the AFCON, held in Cameroon and Amuneke warns current Eagles coach Jose Peseiro to address some weak areas in the team.

“Nigeria is blessed with a crop of talented players, but we can’t go to the tournament merely thinking we can win because we have good players,” Amuneke said.

“Winning AFCON is not about players – there’s a whole lot to be planned and implemented. The offensive players must also be a part of the defence, especially when the team is not in possession. The coach should take a holistic look at his team and find a solution to make them compete well against other teams.”

The former Tanzania and Nigeria national team gaffer also noted that more is expected from Victor Osimhen after the Napoli forward finished 8th in the 2023 men’s Ballon d’Or.

The 24-year-old striker was the top African player in this year’s rankings and became the highest-placed Nigerian in the award’s selection since its inception in 1956, after an impressive 2022-23 season in which he scored 26 Serie A goals to help Napoli win their first Scudetto in 33 years.

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