Mamelodi Sundowns coach Rulani Mokwena tips Super Eagles as AFCON 2023 favorites

Governor Babajide Olusola Sanwo-Olu of Lagos State will play the role of chief host at a special dinner organized by the Lagos State Government for the Super Eagles on Tuesday, January 9, 2024.

Mamelodi Sundowns head coach Rulani Mokwena has identified Nigeria’s Super Eagles as one of the top contenders for the AFCON 2023 tournament.

As the Eagles gear up for their opening Group A match against Equatorial Guinea on Sunday, January 14, 2024, Mokwena believes the team’s abundance of top-class players makes them perennial favorites in the tournament.

While speaking about the AFCON prospects, Mokwena highlighted Nigeria’s strong squad and the individual brilliance of key players, emphasizing that the team is never to be underestimated in major competitions. In their previous three encounters, Nigeria emerged victorious against Equatorial Guinea, setting the stage for an intriguing AFCON clash between the two nations.

Mokwena also identified other strong contenders in the tournament, mentioning Morocco, Egypt, Ghana, Senegal, and Ivory Coast. He praised Morocco for their impressive performance in the last World Cup and emphasized the threat posed by experienced teams like Egypt.

The Sundowns coach shared his insights on players expected to make a significant impact during AFCON 2023. Victor Osimhen, Nigeria’s prolific striker, was highlighted for his goal-scoring prowess and confidence leading the attacking line. Additionally, Mokwena acknowledged the exceptional talents of Achraf Hakimi and Mohammed Kudus, expecting them to be game-changers in the tournament.

In the opening game of AFCON 2023, hosts Côte d’Ivoire secured a 2-0 victory over Guinea-Bissau, with goals from Seko Fofana and Jean-Philippe Krasso.


“Nigeria will always be favorites because they have several top players and they are never pushovers when it comes to the tournament,” he told Sundowns website.

“Morocco is another team I believe will do well because they have a great coach, a great squad and we saw their exploits at the last World Cup.

“Egypt can also be considered a big threat in the competition as they have the pedigree and know-how to win the title.

“I also tip Ghana and Senegal to be strong contenders and I think Ivory Coast will also make it to the last 8,” the Downs coach said.

He also tipped the players who are expected to shine, saying: “Victor Osimhen is one player who is in great form and we have seen his abilities in front of goal.

“He leads the line confidently and scores lots of great goals and in tournaments like this, you need goals.

“I also think Achraf Hakimi is an exceptional player who can change the course of games in several ways. Mohammed Kudus is another game changer who I expect to impress at the tournament.”

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