Articolo

Nigeria v Iceland: Hallgrimsson anticipates another intense battle

20 giugno 2018 18:30

Iceland head coach Heimir Hallgrimsson expects Nigeria to come out firing against his side in Friday's Group D clash in Volgograd.

Hallgrimsson's men continued their remarkable fairytale exploits among international football's elite in their opening match at the 2018 World Cup, holding Lionel Messi and Argentina to a 1-1 draw.

Nigeria failed to produce anything quite so stirring as they subsided to a forgettable 2-0 loss against Croatia.

"This is a must-win game for Nigeria, and that makes it a little bit psychologically different, they have to win," Hallgrimsson told reporters.

"This group is going to be decided in the last minutes, in the last game.

"It’s going to be down to some margins, a set piece, a goal in extra time. This is how this group is going to be played."

A tight finish remains very much in prospect in one of the most evenly-matched groups on paper at the tournament.

However, Nigeria are already lagging behind and appeared devoid of attacking spark throughout their opening performance in Kaliningrad.

"We are focused. We are ready. We want to win," captain and experienced midfielder John Obi Mikel told reporters.

"We know that we need a victory against Iceland to stay in the tournament and we are doing everything in training to make that happen."

Mikel is well aware the Croatia performance went down badly at home, meaning pride - as well as extended participation at the World Cup - is on the line.

“We know how Nigerians were feeling and still feeling now but we have put the loss behind us and look forward to Friday," he added.

"Based on our situation now, we have no other option than to win against the two countries because we still want to continue in this World Cup."

Ultime notizie

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