The Nigerian team led by coach Sunday Oliseh, arrived Kigali on Friday afternoon and have since settled down for business with their first training session that same day. The team also trained Saturday morning as well as in the evening.
According to the fixture for the match, the encounter between the Super Eagles Team B and the Mena of Niger will take place at the Stade Regional de Nyamirambo, Kigali. The match will be played on the artificial pitch of the Stade Regional de Nyamirambo.
Nigeria will also play Tunisia – champions of the second edition of the competition in Sudan five years ago – at the same Stade Regional de Nyamirambo on Friday, 22 January, before traveling to Gisenyi to play Guinea at the Rubavu Stadium on Tuesday, 26 January.
Nigeria come into the tournament with talented players looking to impress and Paul Onobi will be one of those.
Highly rated in the Nigeria Professional Football League, the combative midfielder is a joy to watch in the midfielder with his tirelessness and endeavour on the pitch.
Onobi is a defensive midfielder who covers every blade of grass and coach Sunday Oliseh is a huge fan of the player such that he started him in the World Cup qualifier against Swaziland in Port-Harcourt instead of-wait for it- Mikel Obi of Chelsea.
The Mena of Niger will count on the experience of Kofi Dankwa who is expected to captain the side in the absence of Saminou Rabou and Mousa Mazzaou
Nigeria (4-3-3): Ikechukwu Ezenwa, Austin Oboroakpo, Kalu Orji Okagbue, Jamiu Alimi, Matthew Etim Chima Akas, Ifeanyi Matthew, Paul Onobi,Usman Mohammed, Osas Okoro,Ezekiel Bassey,Tunde Adeniji.
Niger (4-4-2): Issaka Oumarou, Boureima Abdoulaye Katakore Amadou, Dankwae Kofi, Ganiyu Elh Tijani Hutmanu Elh Tijani, Harouna Ali Saidou, Abdou Abdoul Aziz, Issiakou Koudize, Sanoussi Tahirou, Souleymane Dela Sakou, Adamou Moussa Issa, Adebayor Zakari Victorien Adje.
-After placing 3rd at the last edition in South Africa, the Eagles will aim to win a first ever title by winning the 2016 CHAN event, but it all starts with the game against a tough opponent, West African neighbours, Niger.
-The Mena‘s best ever placing is a quarter-final berth at the 2011 edition in Sudan when they were beaten 4-3 on penalties by hosts Sudan in Omdurman.
-Both sides met in an international friendly last September at the Adokiye Amiesimaka Stadium in Port-Harcourt with Nigeria defeating Niger 2-0 on the day.
-Nigeria have topped Niger when it comes to head to head games between two neighbours. Nigeria haven‘t lost to Niger in five meeting between the two sides since 1965.
-Nigeria have won four games and drawn one since a 4-0 spanking of Niger in an international friendly almost 51 year ago.
-Niger upstaged Togo in the qualifying series to confirm their place in the championship – their second in the history of the competition.
-The Menas made their debut appearance in 2011 but were knocked out in the quarter finals round by host Sudan on penalties.
-Nigeria defeated Burkina Faso in the qualification round after a 2-0 home win, to make it their second appearance in a row.
Credit – Footballmole