Tianjin Teda of China midfielder, John Mikel Obi has disclosed that the Super Eagles will rely on hard work and obedience to their coach’s instructions to see them through what he called a tough group at this year’s World Cup.
Looking ahead to the Eagles’ first match this Saturday against Croatia, Mikel admitted it will be a tough encounter, but the Eagles’ skipper says they can pull through with extra efforts and adherence to the instructions from the coach, Gernot Rohr.
He, however, expressed belief that the three-time African champions are among the favourites to win the 2018 FIFA World Cup, which kicks off in Russia on Thursday.
Mikel, who tipped Argentina with Lionel Messi as a top contender for the World Cup in Russia, warned that the Eagles should not be judged by their poor results in their pre-World Cup friendlies.
The captain added that the Eagles will benefit well from the reputation of the two Nigerian players plying their trade in the Russian League.
Ahmed Musa and Bryan Idowu are the two players in the Super Eagles squad playing in Russia Premier League with CSKA Moscow and Amkar Perm.
He also praised Eagles coach, Gernot Rohr for his great impact on the team since he was appointed two years ago.
Ahead of their first match on Saturday against Croatia, the former Chelsea star also said he is satisfied with facilities the Eagles have received at their base camp in Essentuki, but sounded a note of warning to his teammates to step up their efforts and commitment.
‘’We need to continue to work hard, and we need to continue to train and do exactly what we want and what the coach asks for us.
‘’It was nice that after the training, we had the opportunity to give some autographs to the guys.
“We are in a very good place, I believe. I think it’s good. The field is very good, and the fans and the children who came to support us are amazing.
“It’s a good time to try all of that. We know how we play. We know what we can give. We just need to focus more on the tournament,” Mikel concluded.