The Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) has confirmed all medical tests carried out on Super Eagles players and coaches returned negative results. Gernot Rohr’s men were subjected to the assessment ahead of Friday evening’s international friendly against reigning African champions, Algeria, in Austria.
A tweet from the NFF read: “News just in: All Super Eagles players and officials test negative to Coid-19 ahead of the game against Algeria tonight.”
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The football ruling body had dismissed reports in some sections of the media that four of the Super Eagles in camp had contracted the coronavirus. “Please discountenance any reports that some of our players tested positive to Covid-19 ahead of tomorrow’s friendly game against Algeria. It is a blatant falsehood,” they wrote in a statement.
“The writer of the story, who was not part of the press conference earlier today, totally misrepresented what coach [Gernot] Rohr said that since the outbreak of the pandemic, four of our players had tested positive but were all now fully recovered from the virus and back in action. “The results of the Covid-19 tests carried out on the Super Eagles ahead of tomorrow’s [Friday] game are still being awaited.”
The three-time African champions were initially billed to take on Cote d’Ivoire, however, the Elephants pulled out due to internal problems. The encounter billed for Jacques Lemans Arena would be the fourth meeting between the Super Eagles and the Desert Foxes in three years.
A brace from wing-back Victor Moses and John Obi Mikel propelled the team to a 3-1 triumph over the North Africans in the first leg of the third round of 2018 Fifa World Cup qualifications at the Godswill Akpabio International Stadium.
Although the second leg ended 1-1 at the Stade Mohamed Hamlaoui, Constantine, Fifa awarded the game to Algeria, while the NFF was fined for fielding Abdullahi Shehu, who was meant to serve a suspension following yellow card offenses against Swaziland and Zambia.
The most recent outing saw Djamel Belmadi’s men defeat Nigeria 2-1 en route to winning the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations in Egypt thanks to an own goal by William Troost-Ekong and Riyad Mahrez’s goal, with Odion Ighalo’s strike rendered as a mere consolation.