By Adeboye Amosu:
Nigeria defender, Ola Aina, is looking forward to facing the Bafana Bafana of South Africa at the magnificient FNB Stadium, Johannesburg, next month in a 2019 Africa Cup of Nations qualifier, Completesportsnigeria.com reports.
The Super Eagles will look to avenge their matchday one 2-0 defeat at the Akwa Ibom International Stadium, Uyo when they face Stuart Baxter’s men at the iconic ground which also known as the Soccer City.
Aside vengeance, a win in the encounter will see the Super Eagles return to the AFCON Finals after missing the last two editions of the competition.
Gernot Rohr’s men occupy top spot in Group E with nine points, one more than South Africa who are second with eight points. Libya have four points, while Seychelles occupy last position with one point.
Aina reckons that facing the South Africans will be a big test for the Super Eagles but it is a challenge worth experiencing.
”That’s another one I am looking forward to and can tick off my bucket list. It’s a great stadium as we saw in the World Cup in 2010. South Africa have got a fantastic team, they’re also very attacking, so it should be a good test. I’m really looking forward to it if I get picked,” Aina told Chelsea official website.
Aina, who is on a one season long loan at Italian side, Torino missed out on a place in Nigeria’s team to the 2018 FIFA World Cup but has featured in the Super Eagles last two games against the Mediterranean Knights of Libya.
He recalled his experience and has kind words for the Libyans who gave a good account of themselves in both encounters.
”I started on the bench for the first game, but had to come on early because of injury. I felt like I put in a decent performance. It’s never easy coming on from the bench like that, but I thought I did okay. Libya were a good side, but on the day we were just that bit better than them which showed in the 4-0 scoreline,” he added.
”The second game was a lot harder, we won 3-2. They fought really well but we managed to see it through and add more points to our total in the group.”
It is the first time Aina will playing for a club outside England having spent last season on loan at Championship side, Hull City and he is enjoying every bit of his time in the Italian top flight with Torino.
”It’s going really well . Everything is different but I’m adapting. So far so good.
The football here is very tactical. You have to concentrate a lot. They spend a lot of time on set-pieces and getting the right movement. That is what I would say is really different to England,” he stated.
”I think I’m learning a lot tactically. Every game and every training session I am learning something new, and I’m just trying to implement that in my game.”
He describes Toirno’s week two clash against Inter Milan as his best in all the games he has featured for Walter Mazzarri’s men this season.
”In my second game against Inter Milan I came off the bench early because of injury and held my own. It was a good game, we came from 2-0 down to draw 2-2. It was at the San Siro as well, a proper nice stadium,” he said.