By Calista Jacob-Akpan
Flying Eagles head coach Paul Aigbogun insists that his player have learnt from their disappointing defeat to the United States of America and will go all out for a win when they take on Ukraine in their final group game at the FIFA U 20 World Cup in Ukraine on Thursday.
The Flying Eagles will face the Ukranians who are already through to the second round after beating USA and Qatar in their opening two games in the competition at the Bielsko Biala Stadium. Kick-off is 7:30 pm.
Aigbogun’s charges started the competition on a winning note thrashing Qatar 4-0, but were brought down to earth by the USA in the second game, going down to a 2-0 defeat.
The two-time finalists sit in second position in Group D with three points and will need to beat the Europeans to be certain of a place in the Round of 16.
The former Enyimba coach reckoned that his players were not at their best in the last game against USA but have put that beside them and are battle ready for the Ukranians.
“I will say that the early goal we conceded unsettled our players and they were not able to stick to the game-plan that was earmarked for them,” Aigbogun told reporters after the team’s training session on Wednesday.
“We were not at our best but we won’t allow this to dampen our morale because the ultimate is to qualify for the next round. We apologise for the defeat but we are assuring Nigerians that they shall see an improved team against Ukraine.
“The boys were not happy with their performance and they were all distraught after the game. They have been told what they must improve on. It was not that they were totally poor against but the goals they scored against us had a telling effect on them and they were unable to recover.”