The Super Eagles of Nigeria will be facing reigning African champions, Algeria, in a friendly match today, and here are important information about the clash.
The clash is scheduled to hold Friday at the Worthersee Stadium, Klangefurt in Austria from 7:20p.m Nigeria time. The game will be aired live on television and Facebook live.
It will be the first time both countries are meeting in a friendly game, but the 22nd time overall, having met a total of 21 times in competitive tournaments.
The encounter would be a repeat of the first semifinal clash of the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) in Egypt, which Algeria won 2-1, thanks to a Riyad Mahrez late goal.
Manuel Schuttengrubber, a 37-year-old referee from Austria will handle the match.
Schuttengrubber has been a FIFA referee since 2014, and is ranked as a UEFA first category referee.
Algeria have not lost a game since their 1-0 defeat to Benin in an AFCON qualifier in 2018, and have since won 13 games and drawn five matches.
The Djamel Belmadi side have recorded wins against top African teams sides Senegal, Nigeria, Tunisia and Mali during the period.
Nigeria are currently top of their AFCON 2021 qualifying group, with two wins. And since falling to a defeat to Algeria in Egypt, Rohr’s side have clinched three wins, including the third place match against Tunisia, and two draws against Brazil and Ukraine in friendlies.
What Gernot Rohr is saying
The Super Eagles manager says he is hoping to end Algeria’s 18-game unbeaten run.
However, the Franco-German gaffer insists his team is not playing to revenge their 2-1 semi-final defeat in Egypt.
“It’s a match to test new players, we want to see what they are capable of, Algeria will be a big test for us, it’s a team that has been undefeated for 18 games and we will try to stop,” said Rohr.
Players ruled out
Algeria’s Zinedine Ferhat and Mehdi Zeffane will play no part in the game due to fitness concern. The duo picked up injuries during the early part of the team’s preparation.
Nigeria’s Wilfred Ndidi and Oghenakaro Etebo did not even report to camp due to injury. Victor Osimhen also was excused for the encounter.
Head to head
In the 21 times Nigeria have met Algeria, the North African side have won nine times, Nigeria, eight times, while both teams have drawn a total of four times.
What is next?
The Super Eagles will play another friendly game in Austria, against Tunisia next week Tuesday.