Sports

Nigeria get new motivation to beat South Africa after Gernot Rohr’s Benin ambush Rwanda

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The Super Eagles’ hopes of qualifying for the 2026 FIFA World Cup have received a major boost after the Benin Republic defeated Rwanda in Cote d’Ivoire on Thursday night, Soccernet.ng reports.

Benin and Rwanda are both in Group C of the World Cup qualifiers alongside Nigeria, South Africa, Lesotho, and Zimbabwe.

Ahead of matchday three fixtures, Rwanda’s Wasps were the group leaders with four points while Benin were stuck to the base of the log with only one point, earned in a goalless draw against Lesotho. South Africa boast three points to perch behind Rwanda, while the trio of Nigeria, Lesotho, and Zimbabwe have only one point apiece on the board.

A win over Benin would have boosted Rwanda’s qualification hopes but Gernot Rohr’s men had other plans and executed them perfectly inside the Stade Félix Houphouët-Boigny in Abidjan.

Dodji Dokou struck in the 37th minute of the clash to hand Benin a tough 1-0 win that sent them to joint-top in Group C with four points.

Nigeria face South Africa today (Friday), knowing that a victory will take them past their opponents to the top of the group.

Only group winners are guaranteed automatic qualification spots at the next World Cup to be co-hosted by the United States, Canada, and Mexico.

Nigeria, miss the last edition in Qatar after coming short in their final playoff game against Ghana.

Head coach Finidi George at his pre-match press conference reiterated that the Super Eagles understand what is at stake and will put in their best efforts to overcome the Bafana Bafana.

With the extra motivation of knowing that a win could return Nigeria to the summit of Group C, the Super Eagles could go for broke and secure their ninth win in 16 meetings with South Africa.