Sand Eagles says in top shape for Belarus tournament

Lagos, March 3, 2017 (NAN) Nigeria’s Sand Super Eagles will neither dread nor underrate any team at the forthcoming Beach Soccer World Cup scheduled for Belarus, The Bahamas, from April 27 to May 7, the captain, Isiaka Olawale, says.

Nigeria made their last appearance at the quarterfinal of the 2015 edition in Portugal and will represent Africa at this edition with Senegal.

The country will slug it out in Group B alongside Italy, Mexico and a yet to be named country due to inconclusive qualifiers.

”We can only show respect to our opponents but none is dreadful to us. For instance, Italy, we have played together on two occasions and we won one.

”It is only necessary that we show respect to teams in this tournament judging from our own qualifiers in the African region; it wasn’t easy, but we are in top shape.

“So, any team that made it this far, is no pushover. At our last World Cup, we made it to the quarter-final, and this year, we intend to go farther than we did then,” Olawale remarked.

France won the first FIFA – sanctioned tournament in 2005. Brazil and Portugal are the only teams to win the world championship before and after FIFA started sanctioning the sport.

Overall, 17 out of the 42 nations who have ever competed made a top four finish.

Brazil remains the only nation to win the title 13 times and finished in the final four of every championship until 2015 when they finished in fifth place.

Of those 17 nations, only seven have made a top four finish before and after FIFA started sanctioning the World Cup. (TNE)


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