Ahead of Friday’s draw ceremony for the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations, Super Eagles coordinator Patrick Paschal says the team will be ready to face any team in the competition, Completesports.com reports.
The Super Eagles are making a return to the AFCON finals after missing out on the last two editions of the tournament.
The six seeded teams put in Pot 1 for the draw are Egypt (hosts), Cameroon (defending champions), and the quartet of Senegal, Tunisia, Nigeria and Morocco – based on their top placings in the latest April FIFA World Ranking.
“All the countries that have qualified for Egypt 2019 are potential favourites to win it. I believe this is going to be the toughest Africa Cup of Nations finals,” Paschal told Completesports.com in an exclusive chat from his Bauchi base on Thursday.
“For us and the other teams that will be playing in Egypt, it is going to be a tough competition. We are looking forward to the draw tomorrow and I must say we will ready for whatever comes our way.
“The teams that are with us in Pot A are definitely some of the best in the continent and you have our big rivals, Ghana and Cote d’Ivoire who are in Pot B.
“We have improved tremendously too going by our position in the recent FIFA ranking. We want to keep improving and hopefully, have a good competition in Egypt.”
A total of 24 teams will be participating in the tournament for the first time and Paschal, a former Nigeria international, believes that will make the tournament more difficult for any potential winner.
“That we have 24 teams now competing for the title will make it more difficult for all the teams, “Paschal added.
“The small teams will be desperate to impress and cause upset. It is definitely going to be an interesting competition.”
The draw ceremony which will hold in Gaza, near Cairo will kick-off at 7 pm Nigerian time on Friday.
By Adeboye Amosu