Watford midfielder Tom Dele-Bashiru says he has dreams of emulating Austin Okocha and Nwankwo Kanu as he looks forward to tonight’s AFCON U-23 group B clash against the Young Chipopolo of Zambia at the Al Salam Stadium in Cairo.
Both Okocha and Kanu won the Olympic gold in the football event at the 1996 Olympics in Atlanta and Bashiru says he is excited about the prospect of representing his nation in Tokyo next year.
However that can only be accomplished if Nigeria pick one of the three tickets reserved for the continent.
“Jay-Jay Okocha is my hero. I just loved his playing style and watched videos of him all the time when I was growing up. He’s a big hero of mine, as is Kanu.”.
Nigeria needs win after losing to Cote d’Ivoire 1-0 in the opening match.
“It’s a big tournament as if we qualify, we get to go to the Olympics,” he said.
“I’m really excited as it’s a massive competition. There is high expectation to do well and qualify. It will be really disappointing if we don’t qualify. We won it four years ago so we’ve got a lot to live up to. We’ll try our best and hopefully that will be enough,” he told the club’s website.