Five Bold Predictions Ahead Of Nigeria Vs Iceland Game
Published: June 21, 2018
Five Bold Predictions Ahead Of Nigeria Vs Iceland GameIf the 2-0 defeat to Croatia was depressing enough not to mentioned or talked about, what then would another loss to the Super Eagles next Group D opponents, Iceland mean?

As Nigeria could be staring World Cup elimination in the face should they fail to beat Iceland in Volgograd, we bring readers five things we are likely to witness in this make-or-break game.

Nigeria To Score Their First 2018 World Cup Goal: Since her debut in the 1994 edition, Nigeria have not gone two World Cup games without finding the back of the net.

It is very unlikely that would happen now. The game versus Croatia was a tight one, and while we expect this one to be tighter, a goal or two for the Super Eagles would not look out of place. It's over to our band of attackers now.

Draw First Blood And Win: For Iceland, merely avoiding defeat here could still be a good result, with Croatia who face Argentina later today still to come for them.

But their African opponents simply have to win. What more? What could decide how things turn out in Group D might linger till the last minutes of the last group game, so it is of paramount importance to get off to a sensational start here and not allow the opposition do that before you.

The Croats did that against Nigeria and never looked back. The message is simple. If you must come out victorious, you have to score first!

Super Eagles To Come Out Tops In The Midfield Battle This Time
: With the energetic Etebo bounding through the pack, Obi dropping off to pick out the attackers with his key passes while Ndidi halts every attacking wave made by the Islanders, very few will ask for more if it comes up to good effect.

This is not to say that the Heimir Hallgrímsson-led side do not boast of quality midfielders — they more than held their own versus the likes of Lucas Biglia, Angel Di Maria and Eduardo Salvio.

But let us be rest assured our hitches will no longer come from being outclassed in the center of the pack this time.

Set Pieces And Defensive Lapses To Be Corrected
: Much of the media talk since the Croatia game have been centred on how Nigeria's defensive frailties gifted the Balkans two goals from set-piece situations and it is tantamount to naivety if the team fail to correct those little mistakes.

The Super Eagles rarely concede much goals from open play but it would yet make nonsense of the whole thing if they contrive to ship the very avoidable ones. The team will certainly get a lot of stick should such resurface in Volgograd.

Little Goals Could Be Seen Yet: Defensively, Iceland have proven to be a strong outfit as they have shown against top class teams, including last time out versus Argentina.

And apart from the cheeky goals Nigeria only recently started giving away to oppositions, they are a tough bunch to break down.

So what do one expect when two defensively good team clash? Very little goal figure, but don't forget there could be madcap moments of madness!

Emmanuel Chinaza