Africa Cup of Nations 2013: Keshi dedicates victory to people of Nigeria

Africa Cup of Nations 2013: Victorious Nigeria coach Stephen Keshi dedicates his side’s third Afcon triumph to people of his nation

Nigeria
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Burkina Faso
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Victorious Nigeria coach Stephen Keshi dedicated his side’s third Afcon triumph to the people of his nation after Sunday Mba’s winner against Burkina Faso.

Mba’s exquisite finish six minutes before the break lit up what was otherwise a largely poor final in Johannesburg to record Nigeria’s first win since 1994.

But Keshi – who became only the second man ever to captain and coach a winning Afcon side – but warned that the job of restoring Nigeria’s pride is not even half done.

“Winning this is mainly for my nation,” said Keshi.

“When I came on board a year and a half ago my dream was to make all Nigerians happy, and to construct a great Nigerian team.

“We are not there yet, it’s still in process.

“You don’t want to know what was going through my head [in the final five minutes]. To represent Africa in Brazil at the Confederations Cup is an honour for Nigeria.”

Burkina Faso coach Paul Put insisted his defeated side could still be proud of their achievements, but admitted the Stallions showed the Super Eagles too much respect for a final.

“The whole of Burkina Faso can be proud of their players,” said the Belgian.

“We showed Nigeria a bit too much respect in the first half – in the second half we tried to do everything possible. But you have to be big when you lose and small when you win.

“Possibly, we were a little tired after two matches that went to extra-time, but I’m not going to look for excuses.”

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