Africa is always well represented at the FIFA Beach Soccer World Cup and Nigeria is one of those reasons. Being the kings of the continent for many years, the Sand Eagles target this upcoming Power Horse Beach Soccer African Trophy as their big opportunity to begin climbing their way back to the throne of Africa’s beach soccer, now in Senegalese hands. The team had previously won the BSWW Tour Copa Lagos three straight years, before falling in a winner-take-all final against the Cote d’Ivoire at the 2014 edition in December. Second place is not something the coach or team is comfortable with. Durban 2015 will be their next chance to avenge that December loss and begin their fight for the continental crown.
The Copa Lagos loss stung, but the man leading the Nigerian side said that his players only get one day to dwell on the defeats. Whether the players do that is another story all together. The African Trophy will be a little different from the Copa Lagos as the coach said, “We will have a very different side than the one in Lagos. We have dipped into our National League a little more and brought 4-5 new players to help blend with the established vets.” This strategy will also prove helpful in the upcoming qualifier and World Cup as every coach knows that fresh players can move a team from good to great.
Senegal will have much to say about maintaining their hold on the top spot in Africa, but as Nigeria once sat where they are now, the hard work that must be done is well understood by both sides. Audu Adamu did not shy away when saying, “Being number 1 is never bad, is there a target on your back? Maybe. But when you are the best you also have more support and more support means more fun for the players, which also means more wins.” The winning ways never left Nigeria and they are poised to make another leap this season, beginning with the much anticipated Power Horse Beach Soccer African Trophy Durban 2015.