Super Eagles’ captain, Joseph Yobo, said on Tuesday that the team would do the country proud at the ongoing Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON).
The Eagles on Tuesday afternoon returned to training to prepare for Friday’s big showdown against the Chipolopolo of Zambia, the defending champions.
In a statement made available by Ben Alaiya, the team’s media officer to the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) it said that the team was in high spirits.
The team had battled to a nerve wracking 1-1 draw against the Stallions of Burkina Faso in its opening match on Monday.
The Eagles captain was reacting to President Jonathan’s letter delivered to the team on Monday evening by Sports Minister, Malam Bolaji Abdullahi.
The letter read in parts: “The Africa Cup of Nations has always been an exciting and important sports event for us in Nigeria and other African countries.
“However, this edition of 2013 even holds a greater significance for us as a nation. Next year 2014, our dear country will be one hundred years old.
“As we look back and celebrate our achievements as a strong, united nation, we cannot understate the role that sports, especially football played in our national life.
“Football remains one enduring unifying factor in our country which transcends our diversity.
“A successful outing at the Africa Cup of Nations will offer a great opportunity to further inspire pride, faith and hope in a re-energised new Nigeria in the course of our centennial celebrations’’.
Alaiya’s statement also quoted Yobo as commending President Jonathan for the letter to the team, and finding time to watch their games in spite of his busy schedule.
He said the team was now more than inspired to do the nation proud at the championship.
“I will like to on behalf of my mates assure Mr President that we will not let him down.
“All we need is for him to continue to say his fatherly prayers for us all and we shall surely deliver”, he said.
The statement further quoted, Stephen Keshi, the Super Eagles’ Head Coach as saying that only a win would be enough for the team in their second group game against Zambia.