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Eagles ‘unfortunate’ at World Cup, will shift focus to AFCON -Iwobi

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Alex Iwobi

Alex Iwobi says Super Eagles are proud of themselves over their performance at the just-concluded World Cup, adding that they were just unfortunate not to have made it out of the group stage.

The Eagles kicked off their campaign on a disappointing note when they fell 2-0 to Croatia but revived their hopes of advancing with a 2-0 victory over Iceland.

They played in sight of a draw against Argentina, but were stunned by a late goal from Marcos Rojo who fired the two-time champions to the second round of the competition at the expense of the Eagles.

Iwobi however hopes that the young Eagles squad can learn from their campaign in Russia and build for the future.

“We had a lot of hopes and believe that we could do well. We are very proud of ourselves,” the Arsenal forward told BBC Sport.

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“We are just unfortunate about the last minute goal that came against Argentina led to a defeat that knocked us out of the group. We are taking positives but we are very happy with what we did.”

Next up for Gernot Rohr’s men is a 2019 Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) qualifier against Seychelles in September – a matchday 2 encounter of the qualifiers – coming after a disappointing 2-0 loss to South Africa in June last year.

Nigeria have not qualified for the Nations Cup since winning the title in 2013, but Iwobi believes the lessons learnt at the World Cup will be helpful to the team going forward.

He said: “Attention will soon shift to the Nations Cup and we must make our World Cup lessons count.”

Iwobi has won 22 caps for the Super Eagles and have scored 5 goals, including the goal against Zambia at the Godswill Akpabio Stadium in Uyo which sealed Nigeria’s qualification for the 2018 World Cup.

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