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Seedorf confident Cameroon can handle pressure ahead of Nigeria clash

Cameroon are bidding to defend their title.

Clarence Seedorf is in charge of Cameroon (Mike Egerton/PA)
Clarence Seedorf is in charge of Cameroon (Mike Egerton/PA)

Cameroon coach Clarence Seedorf insists neither he nor his players are feeling the pressure of defending their Africa Cup of Nations title.

A second-placed finish behind Ghana, as a result of scoring fewer goals, has set up a last-16 meeting with Group B runners-up Nigeria.

But with progress to the knockout stage the starting point for Cameroon’s defence to get serious Seedorf shrugged off the expectation.

“Pressure is second skin for me and I am happy to be leading Cameroon to defend their title and it’s an honour playing Nigeria at Afcon,” he told a press conference.

“We are glad to have qualified and we don’t feel pressure because we are used to it.

“It is not new to us, trying to win. It’s normal for us. Our team is good, yet Nigeria is a top team, with lots of quality players.

“It will be difficult against a good side like this, but we have what it takes to beat them.

“Our target is to successfully defend our trophy and we will fight till the end to achieve our objective.”

Nigeria coach Gernot Rohr is concerned about more individual errors costing them dearly in the knockout phase.

A defensive mistake saw them beaten by underdogs Madagascar in their final group match, thereby surrendering top spot and a potentially-easier tie against DR Congo.

“I hope we won’t have individual errors again that will cost us,” he said.

“There were changes in the team to play some players and keep them in the rhythm of the competition, but now the best team have to start against Cameroon to make Nigeria proud.”

PA

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