Former France international Marcel Desailly has tipped the Super Eagles of Nigeria to be one of the surprise teams of the 2018 World Cup in Russia while rueing the absence of Ghana from the tournament.
Born in Accra, Ghana, the Chelsea legend was an important member of the French team that won the World Cup for the first time in their history in 1998 and captained the European powerhouse at the 2001 Confederations Cup.
‘’My native Ghana did not qualify. This is my personal wound. But other African teams can spring surprises,’’ Marcel Desailly told Sports Express Russia.
“Nigeria, which has a strong squad, and the Arab countries – Tunisia, Egypt can do it. Perhaps, the moment has come when a team from Africa will finally reach the semifinals.’’
In their maiden appearance at the World Cup in 1994, Nigeria was a minute and forty-five seconds away from qualifying for the quarterfinals, only for Roberto Baggio to equalize, before grabbing his brace in extra-time which knocked the then African champions out of the competition.
The Super Eagles also qualified for the second round in 1998 and 2014.