AFCON 2023 Quarter Final: Nigeria vs Angola Preview, Predictions, and Possible Lineup

AFCON 2023 Quarter Final: Nigeria vs Angola Preview, Predictions, and Possible Lineup

Ero Samson
updated at February 13, 2024 at 11:54 AM
In this article:
CAF Africa Cup of Nations logo
Nigeria logo
Super Eagles logo
Super Eagles
South Africa
Angola logo
Cameroon logo
Namibia logo
Victor Osimhen logo
V. Osimhen
Napoli logoFNigeria logo
Gelson Dala logo
-FAngola logo
Ademola Lookman logo
A. Lookman
Atalanta logoFNigeria logo
  • The quarter-final stage of the 2023 Africa Cup of Nations is set to begin
  • Nigeria's Super Eagles take on Palancas Negras of Angola on February 2
  • Sports Brief has compiled a preview and predicted the outcome of the tie

Nigeria are on the path to securing their fourth Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) title as they gear up for a quarter-final showdown against Angola's Palancas Negras.

Having surpassed their AFCON 2021 performance by overcoming perennial rival, Cameroon in the Round of 16, the Super Eagles are riding high on momentum.

Conversely, the Palancas Negras made history in this year's edition by clinching their first-ever victory in the AFCON knockout stages, eliminating Namibia.

AFCON, Nigeria, Angola, Super Eagles, CAF
Nigeria's Super Eagles players form a huddle ahead of the Africa Cup of Nations clash against Cameroon. Image: Franck Fife.
Source: Getty Images

Leading up to this clash, Jose Peseiro's team, renowned for their defensive prowess, are rightfully tagged as the favourites.

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However, one must not underestimate the Angolans, who have developed a habit of toppling teams ranked higher than them.

With the stage now set for a thrilling encounter, Sports Brief has provided a preview, prediction, and possible team line-ups.

AFCON 2023 QF: Nigeria versus Angola

Nigeria vs Angola - preview

Nigeria are thriving under coach Peseiro's newly-crafted defensive formation, showcasing remarkable comfort and growth.

Once doubted as potential underperformers, the three-time Cup of Nations champions secured a resounding statement with a significant victory over Cameroon.

However, while the Super Eagles are silencing sceptics with their consistently impressive performances, they must not become complacent. The elimination of several tournament favourites highlights the unpredictable nature of the competition.

The upcoming challenge from Angola, known for their giant-killing tendencies, poses a formidable test for the highest-ranked team remaining. Historically, the Palancas Negras have proven to be a troublesome opponent for Nigeria, as seen in the 2006 FIFA World Cup qualifier.

Pedro Goncalves' team, led by the lethal duo of Gelson Dala and Agostinho Cristovao Paciencia (Mabululu), are a potent force in front of goal. Their nine goals in the last four matches at the AFCON underscore their attacking prowess.

For Angola, thwarting Nigeria's advancement to the AFCON semis would mark their best-ever campaign in the competition's history. The Super Eagles must stay vigilant and deliver another top-tier performance to overcome this challenging hurdle.

Nigeria vs Angola - possible team sheets

Nigeria's possible starting lineup

Stanley Nwabali; Ola Aina, Semi Ajayi, William Troost-Ekong, Calvin Bassey, Zaidu Sanusi; Frank Onyeka, Alex Iwobi; Moses Simon, Ademola Lookman, Victor Osimhen.

Angola's possible starting lineup:

Antonio Signori; Eddie Afonso, Kialonda Gaspar, Jonathan Buatu, Augusto Carneiro; Alfredo Ribeiro, Manuel Cafumana,Valdomiro Lameira;,Felisberto Amaral, Agostinho Paciencia, Gelson Dala.

Nigeria vs Angola in AFCON - prediction

Nigeria has developed a penchant for deploying a compact strategy, relying on the formidable skills of forward, Victor Osimhen to unsettle their opponents.

This tactical approach unfolded flawlessly in the encounter with Cameroon, where Osimhen's dynamic presence posed a constant challenge for the Indomitable Lions' defence.

In their upcoming encounter with Angola, Nigeria are poised to maintain a similar tactical framework, albeit with a more fluid and versatile offensive strategy. The aim is to replicate the success achieved against Cameroon while introducing a touch of dynamism to their attacking manoeuvres.

On the other side of the pitch, Angola, considered the underdogs in this clash, are anticipated to adopt a reactive stance. This entails absorbing pressure and capitalising on counter-attacks to catch the Super Eagles off guard.

Writer's prediction: Nigeria's offensive firepower will overwhelm Angola, leading to a narrow Super Eagles victory.

Where to watch the game

All AFCON 2023 matches will air on Sports Premium, channel 252 or 246, on StarTimes as well as on StarTimes-ON app.

Super Eagles legend advises Peseiro

Sport Brief also previously reported on Super Eagles legend, Peter Ijeh giving advice to Nigeria's coach, Peseiro, ahead of the last 8 game with Angola.

The 46-year-old lauded the defensive tactical approach but believes the team needs to keep its shape the same if they are to beat the Palancas Negras.

Despite advocating for continuity, Ijeh felt a subtle adjustment was needed to maintain a higher defensive line, specifically when taking on Angola.

Ero Samson photo
Ero Samson
Samson Ero is a sports journalist with a track record of over five years in the Nigerian media industry. He graduated from Nigerian Institute of Journalism (2021-2023).