Organisers of the prestigious Nigeria Pitch Awards have commended Nigeria’s flagship football team, the Super Eagles, for making the nation proud by defeating their continental rival, the Bafana Bafana of South Africa to take Nigeria closer to a fourth AFCON trophy in Egypt.
Speaking to newsmen in Lagos, Shina Philips, president of the Nigeria Pitch Awards stated that the quarter final contest between both nations was beyond a football match; “it is race to pick a semi-final slot at the 2019 AFCON and a desire by Nigeria to re-assert Nigeria’s supremacy in football over her South African rivals.”
Philips said that Nigeria played her first AFCON 2019 qualifying match against the Bafana Bafana at the Nest of Champions stadium in Uyo, Akwa Ibom State on Saturday 10 June 2017. The South Africans defeated Nigeria by 2-0. The defeat shocked Nigerians and almost crippled the 5th Award Ceremony of the Nigeria Pitch Awards earlier scheduled to hold after the match.
‘The Super Eagles players could not attend the award ceremony because the mood of the nation was sober after that historic defeat. But as lovers of the game, we kept faith with the team and hoped that our revenge, whenever it would come, would re-assert Nigeria’s supremacy over their South African counterpart. That opportunity came calling at the quarter-final clash between both teams and Nigeria seized it.” Philips said.
It will be recalled that after playing a goalless draw with the Warriors of Zimbabwe at the Stephen Keshi International Stadium in Asaba on June 8 2019, the Super Eagles players and other football lovers were hosted by organisers to the 6th Award Ceremony of the Nigeria Pitch Awards