Germany vs Nigeria by PressMan
The Germans bream with confidence, likewise the Nigerians, who had to shake off the disappointment that trailed a 4-2 opening loss to the South American Samba boys. This is a stage, where you must beat your opponent to progress; so, both teams will be gunning for a win. "If we want to be champions, we have to be ready to take on any team. We have the tools to match them." Said Nig coach, Garba.
As expected, the Germans are favourites having played arguably more convincingly than most teams in this tournament. Though it could be argued that they may have enjoyed an undue benevolence from the God of soccer, who saw them paired with probably inferior opponents at the group stages.
This notwithstanding, the Germans are good, and seem to be getting goals on a platter of gold.
They parade some brilliant players, the likes of: Julian Brandt (Leverkusten four goal FW), Marc Stendera(Ent Frankfurt), Hany Mukhtar(Benfica), Niklas Stark(Nurnberg) , Grischa Proemel(Hoffenheim II), captain Kevin Akpoguha (of Nigerian ancestry), etc.
Nigeria on the other hand, closed their group with six points, coming 2nd behind Brazil. Aside the loss to Brazil, where Enaholo, the keeper, committed some cheap blunders, they were more convincing in later games.. The coach also had to deploy a surprising strategy, which saw him bench most of the top stars, who weren’t part of the team that won the African championship. All of them, the likes of Kelechi Iheanacho (Mancity and U17 world MVP), Moses Simon(Genk and member of Belgium season best XI squad), Isaac Success(Granada), Musa yahaya (Tottenham) etc. are dangerous, and can score against any team of their level.
Also, Taiwo Awoniyi, Saviour Godwin, Musa Mohammed, Sokari, etc have been very brilliant.. But the Nigerian team has a defensive lapse, with the goal keeper’s ability still in doubt, despite not conceding in the last two games, where they scored 6 goals. But he has challenged himself; “After the Brazil match, I was in a really bad state. I was desperate to make amends. I challenged myself to do better throughout the rest of the competition. What I did against Korea and Hungary is just the beginning,"
From a Nigerian point of view, expectations are so high, back here in Lagos, as the Nigeria Women and age grade teams appear to be gaining more support than the senior national team, in the past few years. Also, when you talk about fan base and support, you should understand that Africans everywhere support African teams in games like this; hence there will be some motivation from the stands, for both teams.
Historically, both teams have met twice at U20 level, with each winning once, with Nig leading by goals scored. But their last meeting in 2009 was a 3-2 win for the Germans. Traditionally, both teams play an attacking kind of football, so, expect to see 3 or more goals.
Finally, this is will also be an explosive game, with many threats at the back, where the Germans will definitely get a goal, but must be ready to get another, if they must win an all attacking Nigerian side that has all it takes to score goals. Also there will be lesser yellow cards as both teams are the two most disciplined according to fifa.com statistics.
I leave you to worry about who wins, while I walk away with my Both Teams To Score & Over 2.5 goals, @1.95 odds… Not so bad for two teams with a combined 24goals in 3 matches… Good lucks.
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|BTS & Over2.5 goals||Bet365||1.95||8||1-0 LOST (-8 units)|
* Odds as of post published time and are subject to change.