Super Eagles coach, Gernot Rohr has highlighted that the Republic of Benin are defensively strong and recalled that the Squirrels eliminated Morocco from the round of 16 at the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations.
The Super Eagles coach is mindful of the fact that the Squirrels could prove a tough nut to crack, as they have not lost a home match in eight years.
Half of the players named on the Benin roster are French-based and they flew to Cotonou earlier this week aboard a private jet.
“Benin have not lost a match since eight years at home, the last time they lost was in 2013 so you can imagine that we want to be the first team to win there in eight years,” Rohr said.
“It will not be easy, they have a very good defence, they were quarterfinalist in the last AFCON, they eliminated Morocco.
“They have a private plane to help the French-based players, what we could not have unfortunately.
“They found the money to take private plane and to bring them back by charter. This was the condition to get the French players.”
Three-time African champions Nigeria will tackle Benin at the Stade Charles de Gaulle in Porto-Novo on Saturday, March 27.
Meanwhile, the coach said he would use the 2021 Africa Cup of Nations qualifiers against Benin and Lesotho to “restore a winning mentality” to the squad ahead of the 2022 World Cup qualifying campaign.
“We are keen to restore a winning mentality to the group ahead of very crucial games we have,” said Rohr.
“It is important that we earn victories in the upcoming matches so that we get into our paces for the FIFA World Cup qualifiers,” he said.