Super Eagles have landed

2010-06-03 00:00

THE Nigerian national football team were the first of five teams to be based in KwaZulu-Natal to arrive in South Africa for the 2010 Fifa World Cup.

The team landed at Durban’s King Shaka International Airport yesterday and were met by a small delegation that included members of the eThekwini Municipality, uMgungundlovu Municipality and the province’s 2010 co-ordination team.

The Super Eagles, as they are known by their fans, will be based at the Waterfront Protea Hotel in Richards Bay.

They will be training at the new state-of-the-art Umhlathuze Multi-Purpose Sports Centre that was built by the local municipality.

The side arrived in Richard’s Bay at around 2 pm. The streets of the town were thronged with schoolchildren and older fans, many waving Nigerian flags.

The team were greeted by a guard of honour that escorted them from King Shaka to Richard’s Bay.

Waterfront Protea Hotel Manager Andre de Klerk said Richards Bay is delighted to be hosting a World Cup side.

He stressed that the hotel is adequately prepared to ensure that the Nigerians are well looked after.

“We are extremely proud, honoured and excited,” De Klerk said.

“We can assure these guys that we will try our best to make them feel at home. Richards Bay is behind them through their ups and downs.”

By 4.30 pm yesterday afternoon, the squad was already training together and last night saw the uThungulu District Municipality hold a welcoming dinner for them at the municipal buildings.

The Nigerians were due to arrive in South Africa from London on Tuesday. They were unable to fly, however, when their private jet company experienced a technical problem and cancelled the Monday night flight.

The Super Eagles will play their first World Cup match at Johannesburg’s Ellis Park stadium on Saturday, June 12, against Argentina.

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