AFCON 2023 semifinal: Don’t underrate South Africa, coach Amun warns Super Eagles

“The beginning was rough. Toward AFCON qualifiers, those matches that they played in Uyo and outside Uyo were difficult; you don’t blame the fans for criticising the team."

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AFCON 2023,  semifinal, Don’t underrate South Africa, coach Amun warns, Super EaglesFanny Amun, a former Super Eagles coach, has advised the team not to underrate South Africa in their semifinal encounter at the Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) in Côte d’Ivoire.

Amun, in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Sunday in Lagos, also applauded the performance of the Super Eagles, saying the team had improved with each match played.

BRANDPOWER reports that the Super Eagles defeated the Antelopes of Angola 1-0 at the quarter final stage, and will face the Bafana Bafana of South Africa in a semi-final encounter on Feb. 7.

“I hope they consolidate on it and not underrate any team in the semi-final game. The past of the two teams does not really matter, with each match I’ve seen improvement.

“We should be prepared to give the match with South Africa our best, we shouldn’t underrate any team that has made it to the semi-finals.

“The two teams are in the semi-finals and I know that a team must win and a team must lose.

“There must be a winner. Let’s cross this semi-final bridge first then from there we will see how it goes.

“But I can tell you the finals will be very exciting; this year’s edition of AFCON has been filled with pleasant surprises,” he said.

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On whether the Super Eagles had met the expectations of Nigerians, he said he was not in the habit of making predictions as a football administrator.

“First and foremost I’ve never been one of those doubting Thomases that predicted if Nigeria would do well or not, because I’m not a soothsayer.

“I never knew they would do well. Normally people love to predict but I have always known that you can’t predict any game.

“The beginning was rough. Toward AFCON qualifiers, those matches that they played in Uyo and outside Uyo were difficult; you don’t blame the fans for criticising the team.

“If the expectation was high they probably would have done badly, but the expectation was low; now they have performed beyond expectation,” Amun said.

South Africa defeated the Cape Verde’s national team 2-1 on penalties, after the quarter-final match ended 0-0 in 120 minutes.