No racism concerns for Nigeria captain Mikel

No racism concerns for Nigeria captain Mikel

(In Nigeria, oyibo is a pidgin word that usually refers to a European.) Two were born in the Netherlands, one in Germany, and one in Russian Federation, but they all chose to play for their parents' country of birth.

You sense that every game - and every point - will matter in this group, and as such, it's imperative that Nigeria avoid defeat when they face Croatia in Kaliningrad in Saturday's group opener.

They have reached the second round in three of the five World Cup finals tournaments they have qualified for. "We have players at big clubs, they don't just play there, they're the driving forces of those clubs".

With this in mind, Nigeria would do well to ensure they start strongly, to put the pressure on the Europeans early and to test their resolve and team spirit.

Yes, chickens. Those weird looking birds that lay eggs and which we turn into nuggets have been banned from the opening game of Group D on Saturday.

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"No, I think everyone has been really nice", the former Chelsea midfielder told the media.

This will be the first encounter between Croatia and Nigeria. The Over-Under on goals scored in this 2018 World Cup match is 2.5.

There are, however, better groups to be the second-best team in, as the group D runners-up will most likely see themselves facing the most talented team the French have fielded in at least two decades. Nigerian celebrities have not been left out. Coach Gernot Rohr says the defender has a 50-50 chance of appearing in the first game.

Croatia has one of the world's top midfielders in Luke Modric.

Onazi declared: "This is the most important game we will play at the World Cup because we wish to take it a game at a time". Fernando Hierro opened scoring for Spain at the 1998 World Cup directly from a free kick, while Argentina's victories secured in 2002 and 2010 were courtesy two perfectly buried headers, from Gabriel Batistuta and Gabriel Heinze.

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