Nigeria and Cameroon bosses play charm card ahead of Cup of Nations last-16 tie

Nigeria head coach José Peseiro and his Cameroon counterpart Rigobert Song on Friday hailed the quality of each other's squads as they prepared to clash in the last-16 at the 2023 Africa Cup of Nations.

Nigeria advanced to Saturday night's showdown in second place with seven points from a pool containing hosts Cote d'Ivoire, Guinea Bissau and Equatorial Guinea while Cameroon needed two late goals against Gambia in the final game to emerge as runners-up with four points from Group C.

But despite their travails, Peseiro refused to minimise the threat in Saturday's tie.

"We are a big team and we are playing a big team," said the Portuguese.

"You know what you need to do against such teams. You must play with the same enthusiasm, the same demand, commitment, focus and massive sacrifice."

Song, who won the Cup of Nations twice with Cameroon, spoke glowingly about his side's impending adversaries.

"Nigeria are a good, solid team. They're serious. We're going to have to correct the mistakes we've been making and deploy all our resources to get the result."

Cameroon are seeking a sixth continental crown and will play the match at the Stade Félix Houphouet-Boigny in Abidjan where the country won its first Cup of Nations in 1984 after beating Nigeria 3-1. Two more triumphs in 1988 and 2000 have come at the expense of Nigeria.


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