We can’t show Nigeria too much respect- John Keister ahead of Afcon Q clash

Sierra Leone boss John Keister has so far driven the Leoneans to a victory, two draws, and a loss in the 2023 AFCON qualification match

The head coach of the Sierra Leon team, John Keister, has revealed that his boys will not back down during their next clash against the Super Eagles of Nigeria, reports.

The former Dover Athletic player acknowledges the threat of the Super Eagles players, and expresses his respect to them, but revealed that their respect for Jose Peseiro’s men is limited.

The 2013 AFCON champions will tackle the Leoneans to guarantee their spot in Cote d’Ivoire after their 1-nil victory against Guinea-Bissau.

However, the 52-year-old manager reminiscing about Sierra Leone’s previous victory against Nigeria in 2001—for which he was part of the squad—believes his troops can replicate the same victory against Peseiro’s men.

Nigeria rallied from a goal down to secure a 2-1 victory against Leone Stars in June 2022 at the Moshood Abiola Stadium in Abuja, thanks to goals from Alex Iwobi, and Victor Osimhen.

The coach, speaking to the media, reveals what might be a challenge against the Super Eagles at the SKD Sports complex in Liberia, but he believes his team can put up a good challenge.

“…but this is a good time. I was part of the team in 2001 that defeated Nigeria 1-nil at home when no one expected anything from us. I have that feeling again with this group in regard to challenges like players being suspended, being injured or for personal reasons.

“You as a coach, you [have to] respect their position. But we can’t show them too much respect, and that’s football,” he said.

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The Sierra Leone troops still have a chance to make the 2023 AFCON tournament slated to hold in Cote d’Ivoire if they secure a victory against Nigeria, and Guinea-Bissau in their last two matches.