The dream of every nation is to win the title and bring celebration home.
Given the strong following football enjoys in Nigeria and the popularity of Super Eagles’ stars all over the world, an outside observer may be forgiven for thinking that Nigeria is the best footballing nation in the world.
In fact, Nigerian fans do like to think of their team as the giants of African football.
Well, in terms of natural skill, flair, and a pool of players, that is probably the case, but on-field success leaves plenty of room for debate.
Also, Nigeria have won just three titles at the Africa Cup of Nations, which isn’t exactly what you would expect from the “Giants of Africa”, especially with Egypt soaring away with seven triumphs.
But why have the Super Eagles not won more AFCON titles?
At the start of every AFCON tournament, Nigeria is usually classed amongst the favourites for the competition. The best betting sites in Nigeria, most of which have AFCON betting in their portfolio, almost always have the Super Eagles as part of their the top three contenders for the title.
Nigeria’s relative AFCON shortcomings can be attributed to several factors, including bad luck and an uncanny ability to activate the self-destruct button.
The 90’s team that won the title in 1994 was arguably the best set of Nigerian footballers ever assembled, but they couldn’t defend their title in 1996 after the Super Eagles were withdrawn from the tournament for political reasons.
The team was subsequently banned from the 1998 tournament in Burkina Faso.
We have also failed to qualify for the Africa Cup of Nations a few too many times in recent years. Nigeria suffered the ignominy of missing out on back-to-back AFCONs in 2015 and 2017, having also not qualified for the 2012 tournament.
That is just not good enough for a team like the Super Eagles.
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