By Amaechi Agbo.
The minster of Youths and Sports Development, Bar. Solomon Dalung has reassured Nigerians that the Super Eagles are not going to Russia 2018 World Cup as spectators but as contenders who will take the world by storm.
The minister stated while addressing sports journalists over the weekend in Abuja. He added that Super Eagles 2-4 win over Argentina in an international friend last two weeks has heralded Nigeria’s return to global football reckoning.
According to him, “The Super Eagles qualified for the World Cup historically for the first time with even a match to go. The Super Eagles qualified without the usual tradition of engaging calculator for computing.
“One unique aspect of the qualification that has remained too dear to me, that for the first time in the history of football, Nigeria defeated Zambia at home. We pray, just like I believe, that Nigeria has made a statement.
“We are not going to the World Cup as mere spectators. We are going as contenders. We have also established our dominance in the last match we played with one of the top teams in the world and of course, the world had had
the message and had it loud that Nigeria is coming back again,” Bar Dalung said.
The minister further stated that the sports ministry has been doing well in recent times going by the medals and trophies various federations had won since the new sports administration came into being two years ago.
“Amazingly, last two week, Nigeria won the Scrabble World Championship and this is the first the country is winning that championship back to back. We have been harvesting medals from almost all the sports.
“The one that has impressed me too is the performance of our hockey team. In the past 20 years, our hockey team had not even performed in any competition. But this year, we went to the African Championship and came back with a bronze medal. That is quite encouraging.
“Our weightlifting federation also participated in the African Championship and came back home with about 10 medals.
“Indeed, I can continue with our different achievements that we have recorded. The bottom line is that we are here to serve our country and we will do our modest best to ensure that when we leave the stage, posterity will be invited to judge our performance.”