Nigeria coach Gernot Rohr says their big 2018 FIFA World Cup Group B qualifying date against Zambia will be bigger than their previous pool clash against Cameroon.
The Super Eagles beat the former Group B runners-up 4-0 in Uyo and drew 1-1 away last month to see Cameroon drop to 3rd and ended their interest in the race in the 2018 qualifiers.
Nigeria now face a rejuvenated and resurgent Zambia who beat Algeria 3-1 at home and 1-0 away in September to sneak into second place and within three points of them.
Nigeria have 10 points, Zambia have 7 points with two rounds of matches left to play.
“We are looking to collecting a decisive result in our group this weekend. If we win this game on Saturday then we qualify,” Rohr told Nigerian media after Tuesday training at Saturday’s match venue in Uyo.
“But we know that Zambia has a good team. They are the U20 AFCON champions and they have a different team to the one we faced in Ndola,” Rohr said.
Nigeria beat Zambia 2-1 last October 9 at Levy Mwanawasa Stadium in what is Chipolopolo’s only Group B loss before holding Cameroon to a 1-1 draw in Limbe on match-day-two away last November.
Zambia coach Wedson Nyirenda is carrying three Under-20 players from the 2017 U20 AFCON winning team.
One of those Under-20 stars is Patson Daka who scored the lone goal away in Algeria.
“So we will not underrate this Zambian team, we have a lot of respect for this team. They beat Algeria twice and I think it will be more difficult than Cameroon.”
Zambia must win away in Uyo to stay in the hunt.
Anything less will hand Nigeria their ticket to Russia.