ENITAN OBADINA / AIPS* in ABU DHABI: A record setting achievement awaits Nigeria if they beat Mexico in the final of the FIFA U-17 World Cup, UAE 2013 in the Mohammed bin Zayed stadium in Abu Dhabi.

The Golden Eaglets aim to win the coveted trophy for a record fourth time, surpassing Brazil in the process and coach Manu Garba wants the honour of being the man to deliver the record for the African country.

He said: “Mexico would be looking for revenge from our match in the first round but we are going to win this match because we want to set the record as the best team in the world at this level. We respect Mexico for what they have been able to do at this World Cup but our prayer is that God will crown our efforts”

On a personal note, Garba Manu has been telling all who care to listen about his mission at the tournament and, at the pre-match press conference, he reiterated his desire while nodding his head in self-assurance.

He said: “Of course, I have won this trophy before but winning it on Friday by beating Mexico would be the best moment of my coaching career. None of the players that I brought here play in the Nigerian domestic league and I and the rest of the coaching crew had to groom this team from the scratch.”

The Golden Eaglets will also be in line to equal or surpass Germany’s record of most goals scored in a single edition of an U-17 World Cup if they score more than one goal in the match, which would automatically mark UAE 2013 as the highest-scoring such tournament.

South Korea 2007 saw 165 goals and this has already accounted for 164.


* AIPS, the international sports journalists association, is running a Young Reporters course at the FIFA U-17 World Cup UAE 2013 with the support of the local organising committee and FIFA

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