Search

Mikel wants Nigeria to make their mark

13:10 09 June 2014

Chelsea midfielder ready for Super Eagles action

Jon Obi Mikel believes Nigeria have improved over the past four years and have the ability to win the World Cup.

The Super Eagles face Iran in their opening game, Bosnia-Herzegovina second and the highly-fancied Argentina last of all.

But the Chelsea midfielder believes his country have the ability to, not only progress from the group, but emerge triumphant at the Maracana on July 13.

“I think we’re in better shape than in 2010,” he said. “We want to go all the way.

“With the team spirit and calibre of players we have, I think we can. We want to get to the final.

“You never know in football. We’re going into every game to win, but have to take it one game at a time.

“I think that is the mentality we have in this team.

“The young players are coming up and they’re learning from the older players. We’re mixing it up – the group is looking strong.”

Nigeria picked up a solitary point at the 2010 World Cup, losing to Argentina and Greece before drawing with South Korea.

But Mikel believes the mixture of youth and experience in the current squad makes it stronger.

“Four years ago, we had an aging team but there are a lot of young players in the team and they’re all hungry,” he added.

“I think that’s the mentality we have. Hopefully we’ll have a good tournament.”

Nigeria emerged as Africa Cup of Nations champions in 2013 and Mikel says it led to an increase in confidence in the camp.

“It gives us extra confidence,” he said. “We have to make sure we know we’re representing Africa as the whole continent, the same as the other African countries.

“It’s going to be tough – the highest of all tournaments. We have to go there and make sure we perform well.”

Argentina are overwhelming favourites to progress from Group F, with Bosnia-Herzegovina and Nigeria battling for second place and Iran predicted to finish bottom.

But Mikel insists they are going to be meticulous in their preparation.

“We’re going to approach the Iran and Bosnia game in the same way,” he said. “Even when we play Argentina we’ll approach it the same. It doesn’t matter who we face. We want to get out of the group stages and see what happens.

“We do a little bit [of research] but hopefully what we do is going to pay off during the tournament.”

0 comments

Comments

Welcome , please leave your message below.

Optional - JPG files only
Optional - MP3 files only
Optional - 3GP, AVI, MOV, MPG or WMV files
Comments

Please log in to leave a comment and share your views with other Newham Recorder visitors.

We enable people to post comments with the aim of encouraging open debate.

Only people who register and sign up to our terms and conditions can post comments. These terms and conditions explain our house rules and legal guidelines.

Comments are not edited by Newham Recorder staff prior to publication but may be automatically filtered.

If you have a complaint about a comment please contact us by clicking on the Report This Comment button next to the comment.

Not a member yet?

Register to create your own unique Newham Recorder account for free.

Signing up is free, quick and easy and offers you the chance to add comments, personalise the site with local information picked just for you, and more.

Sign up now

Latest Sport Stories

10 minutes ago

O’s striker keen to build on goal against Peterborough United last weekend.

Shaun Batt
Nathan Clarke (left) is hoping for a win on his return to Yorkshire when Leyton Orient travel to Barnsley tomorrow. Pic: Simon O'Connor

Captain keen to get O’s out of the rut they currently find themselves in.

Fabio Liverani
08:00
West Ham United v Newcastle at the Boleyn Ground

Hammers boss is looking to rotate his squad over the Christmas period

Yesterday, 17:00
Essex under-18s celebrate a goal

Three levels bring home points for representatives

Surrey

Most read sport

The mother of seven of the children suffered serious stab wounds. She remains in a stable condition in hospital.

According to the MoD, the answer is a resounded “yes”.

Lewis Hamilton’s metaphor for life is particularly deep, with many turns.

Digital Edition

Image
Read the Newham Recorder e-edition today E-edition