U23 AFCON: South Africa Clash ‘Like A Final’ – Ozornwafor (AUDIO)

Olympic Eagles defence stalwart Valentine Ozornwafor has said Nigeria’s last Group B clash against South Africa at the U23 AFCON in Egypt will be treated ‘like a final’.

Defending champions Nigeria currently occupy second spot in Group B having amassed three points from their opening two games.

Nigeria must defeat group leaders South Africa who have one more point in Friday’s clash at the Al-Salam Stadium in Cairo to be sure of progress to the semifinals of the tournament which also doubles as qualifiers for next year’s Olympics in Tokyo, Japan.

Imama Amapakabo’s men had rebounded from an opening 0-1 loss to Cote d’Ivoire to beat Zambia 3-1 on Tuesday, a result that revived their hopes of reaching the semifinals of the competition.

A draw against South Africa will not even be good enough for Nigeria if Cote d’Ivoire (3pts) beat Zambia (1 pt) in the other Group B clash, and the former Enyimba defender is aware of that permutation.

“It will be a different ball game; South Africa game will be a different ball game,” the 20-year-old, who is on loan at Spanish second division side Almeria from Galatasaray, stressed.

Download Audio

“Like I said, we will take every game in a gradual process. As they come, we take every game like a final.

“The South Africa game; we’ll take it like a final. If we lose, we are out, if we win, we are in the tournament.”

The top three teams at the tournament, which is in its 3rd edition, will advance to the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.