On February 7, 2024, the Super Eagles of Nigeria will confront the Bafana Bafana of South Africa in a highly anticipated rematch at Bouake Stadium at 6 pm West African Time. This match recalls their 2000 semi-final clash where the Super Eagles prevailed 2-0 over the 1996 champions in Lagos.
Many are eagerly anticipating this match for various reasons. For some Nigerians, it's a chance to retaliate for South Africa's Grammy Award win, while for some South Africans, it's an opportunity to settle past grievances with Nigeria and bridge the gap in Afcon victories.
Nigeria has secured three Africa Cup of Nations titles in 1980, 1994, and 2013, whereas South Africa clinched one in 1996. Nigeria has participated in the World Cup six times since their debut in 1994, compared to South Africa's three appearances since their debut in 1998. Nigeria and South Africa have competed against each other 14 times across various competitions, including the FIFA World Cup, Afcon, and international friendlies. Their initial encounter occurred on October 10, 1992, resulting in a 4-0 victory for Nigeria. Another 4-0 win for Nigeria followed on January 31, 2004. Their most recent clash was during the Afcon 2019 tournament in Egypt, where both teams advanced to the Round of 16. In the quarter-finals, the Super Eagles emerged triumphant with a 2-1 victory. Nigeria currently leads the head-to-head record with 7 wins, 5 draws, and 2 losses.
Discussion on social media has intensified post-quarter-finals, with Nigerians expressing confidence in their victory while South Africans promise to give Nigeria a tough time. Excitement builds as the match approaches.