Guinea-Bissau will be looking to complete an impressive group double over Nigeria in their 2023 Africa Cup of Nations qualifying clash at the Estadio 24 de Setembro on Monday.
The Super Eagles, who were beaten 1-0 by their fellow West Africans in the first of their Group A double-header on Friday, will be looking to bounce back and get their qualifying campaign on track.
Eyebrows continue to be raised around Jose Paseiro’s ability to lead Nigeria to success as the former has struggled to make his mark since taking over the reins in May 2022.
The Portuguese manager was in fact a surprise appointment for the Super Eagles job after his underwhelming 18-month spell in charge of Venezuela, where he picked up just one win in 10 matches.
Despite calling up a host of world-class talents across all departments of the pitch, Nigeria were stunned in Abuja as they fell to a 1-0 defeat at the hands of Guinea-Bissau on Friday.
With less than 40% of the ball possession, Baciro Cande’s side found a way against the run of play as Mama Balde powered home the only goal of the game one minute before the half-hour mark.
The 2013 Africa Cup of Nations winners have now lost each of their last four matches across all competitions, suffering defeats against Algeria, Costa Rica, Portugal and most-recently Guinea-Bissau.
Nigeria kicked off their quest for a place in Ivory Coast in June 2022, when they scrapped a 2-1 home win over Sierra Leone four days before running riot in a 10-0 dismantling of Sao Tome and Principe.
Friday’s defeat against the Djurtus was a new low for Nigeria and former Sporting Lisbon manager Paseiro, whose task remains to guide the Super Eagles to a third consecutive AFCON appearance.
Meanwhile, Balde’s first-half strike at the Moshood Abiola National Stadium helped Guinea-Bissau maintain their unbeaten qualifying campaign and surge to the top of the Group A table.
Cande’s men kicked off their quest for a place in next year’s continental showpiece with an emphatic 5-1 victory over Sao Tome and Principe in June 2022, when they hit four second-half goals following a 1-1 draw at the interval.
Guinea-Bisau were left spitting feathers at the Stade General Lansana Conte four days later as they were held to a 2-2 draw by Sierra Leone after bottling their a two-goal lead in the final 13 minutes of the game.
Prior to Friday’s win over Nigeria, the Djurtus were on a three-game winless run in all competitions, picking up two draws and suffering a disappointing 1-0 loss to Mauritania in the 2022 Africa Nations Championship qualifiers.
With three games to go, Guinea-Bissau sit one point above second-place Nigeria in the group standings as they look to secure a fourth consecutive AFCON appearance since missing out in 2015.
Guinea-Bissau Africa Cup of Nations Qualifying form:
Guinea-Bissau form (all competitions):
Nigeria Africa Cup of Nations Qualifying form:
Nigeria form (all competitions):
We say: Guinea-Bissau 0-1 Nigeria
Nigeria possesses the firepower needed to get the job done and will be looking to restore some pride at the Estadio 24 de Setembro. While Guinea-Bissau now have the home advantage in their favour, we predict that the Super Eagles will scrap a narrow win and return to the top of the table.