President of Nigeria Football Federation, Alhaji Ibrahim Musa Gusau has reiterated that three-time champions Nigeria are ready to give the campaign their best shot when the 34th edition of the Africa Cup of Nations begins in Cote d’Ivoire on 13th January 2024.
Speaking while receiving in audience at the NFF Secretariat, the Ambassador of Cote d’Ivoire to Nigeria, His Excellency Kalilou Traore, Gusau praised the Government of Cote d’Ivoire for the huge investment in stadia and related infrastructure in order to be able to adequately host the continent, 40 years after the country played host to the 14th edition of the competition in 1984.
“I have been receiving regular briefings on the preparations from the President of Cote d’Ivoire Football Federation, Yacine Idriss Diallo, who is a personal friend. I am aware that the Government of Cote d’Ivoire has really invested in stadia and general infrastructure to make the AFCON a success and a huge spectacle.
“Our two teams (Super Eagles and Elephants) are in the same group at the finals, and it would be a very interesting game when we play on 18th January. We know the whole of Africa and even the world will be focused on Cote d’Ivoire before, during and after the AFCON, and our team will be ready to do its best. When Cote d’Ivoire hosted the AFCON in 1984, our Eagles finished second. This time, we will work very hard to emerge as champions.”
Earlier, Ambassador Traore congratulated the NFF on the fact that Nigeria is one of the 24 participating nations at the upcoming AFCON, and used the opportunity to invite the NFF leadership to the Ivorian National Day, to be celebrated at the embassy of Cote d’Ivoire on Friday, 17thNovember.
“We want the NFF to be part of the event. The Ivorian National Day is usually celebrated in August, but it was postponed this year because of the death of our former President, Dr. Henri Konan Bedie. We also want to use the opportunity to launch a promotional programme ahead of the AFCON, which our country is hosting early next year.”
Also present at the occasion were NFF Executive Committee member, H.E. Ali Silas Agara; NFF General Secretary, Dr. Mohammed Sanusi; NFF Director of Communications, Ademola Olajire; Cisse Karim from the Office of First Counsellor at the Ivorian embassy and; NFF Chief Protocol Officer, Emmanuel Ayanbunmi.