The True Patriots of Sao Tome and Principe have arrived in Uyo, Akwa Ibom capital, for their 2023 Africa Cup of Nations qualifier against the Super Eagles of Nigeria. The game will be played on Sunday, September 10, 2023 at the Godswill Akpabio Stadium.
Sao Tome and Principe are at the bottom of Group L with zero points and have no chance of qualifying for the continental tournament. However, they are determined to put up a good fight against Nigeria, who have already secured their place in the AFCON with 11 points from five games. The team is led by coach Gustavo Clemente, who said he is proud of his players for their efforts despite the difficult circumstances they face.
“We are here to play our best and try to get a positive result. We know Nigeria are a very strong team and one of the best in Africa, but we are not afraid of them. We have improved a lot in this campaign and we want to end it with dignity. We have some problems with our federation and our facilities, but we are not here to complain, we are here to play football,” Clemente said.
The Super Eagles arrived in Uyo on Monday and have been training at the stadium ahead of the clash. All the invited players, including new invitees Gift Orban, Victor Osimhen, Samuel Chukwueze and Kelechi Iheanacho, are in camp and ready for action.
The coach of the Super Eagles, Gernot Rohr, said he will use the opportunity to test some new players and give them a chance to prove themselves. He also said he expects a tough game from Sao Tome and Principe, who have shown some improvement in their recent matches.
“We are happy to be here in Uyo and we are looking forward to the game on Sunday. We have qualified already but we want to finish the campaign on a high note. We will also give some new players a chance to show what they can do and see how they fit into our team. Sao Tome and Principe are not a pushover, they have played some good games against Sudan and Benin and we have to respect them,” Rohr said.
The match between Nigeria and Sao Tome and Principe will kick off at 4 p.m. local time on Sunday. The referee for the game is Jean-Jacques Ndala Ngambo from Congo. The other match in Group L will see Benin host Sudan in Cotonou on the same day.