NIGERIA’S Dream Team VI will enjoy maximum support from Brazilian fans as they come face-to-face with a crack Germany side in the semi-final stage of the men football competition at the Rio Olympic Games on Wednesday night.
Nigeria defeated Denmark 2-0 at the Arena Fonte Nova in Salvador to set up the potentially absorbing cracker with the Germans who were also ruthless against Portugal with a 4-0 hammering win.
That authoritative victory saw Serge Gnabry score his sixth goal of the campaign for the Sao Paulo clash slated at 4 pm local time (7 pm GMT).
When the Times Sports took to some of the busy streets of Rio de Janeiro on Sunday to gauge the expectation of fans ahead of the Nigeria-Germany tie, the respondents all rooted for the West African side.
“Most of us have already made up our mind to fly to Sao Paulo and support Nigeria beat Germany,” said Joao, a worker at the Itaoka Motel in Rio. Many others sang the same song.
Flight from Rio to Sao Paolo is a little over an hour. But others said they were going to go by the fast train to throw their weight behind Nigeria.
Reason to support Nigeria is all-too predictable.
In 2014, Brazilians watched a complete awe as the Germans demolished their trusted national team 7-1 at the semi final stage of the FIFA World Cup, and have since sworn not to ‘forgive’ the Europeans.
Aside from that, Brazil would rather feel comfortable playing Nigeria at the final than the Germans; sure that they will beat Honduras in the other semi-final tie at the Rio de Janeiro Olympics Stadium at 1.pm (4.pm GMT).
Indeed, the Samba boys have won everything in football but have Olympic gold missing in their rich football cabinet and would want to do everything in their power to break that debacle, this time around.
But Nigeria should be careful. If there is anybody the Dream Team VI should be wary of, then it is Gnabry – rather than allowing themselves to fall prey to the guile of the expected thunderous Brazil support.
The 21-year-old Arsenal midfielder spent the majority of last season on loan at West Brom and has struggled to properly launch himself under Arsene Wenger but has emerged as a glittering light for the Germans.