Former Super Eagles goalkeeper and AFCON 1994 champion Peter Rufai has showered praises on the current Super Eagles shot-stopper Stanley Nwabali over his outstanding performance at the just concluded 2023 AFCON in Ivory Coast.

Before the commencement of AFCON, Nigerians raised concern on the strength of their goal post and their confidence wasn’t high, but then coach Jose Peseiro made a surprising decision by entrusting Stanley Nwabali with the crucial role of manning the posts.

Despite initial scepticism, the 27-year-old adapted swiftly and played a major role in helping his team get to the finals of the tournament. Nwabali has earned the admiration of many football lovers including that of the former Nigerian international goalkeeper Peter Rufai who has not failed to commend Nwabali.

In an Interview with TVC News Nigeria, Peter Rufai expressed his satisfaction over the performance of the Chippa United keeper starting from Super Eagles first AFCON game against Equitorial Guinea.

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In highlighting Nwabali’s goalkeeping skills, he said, “In the commencement of the AFCON, the first match against Equatorial Guinea, that was my first time seeing Stanley Nwabali.

“Immediately I assessed his performance, his movement, communication, composure and I immediately said to myself Nigeria has been able to solve this problem, the yearning of Nigeria getting a better goalkeeper for the Super Eagles.

“Nwabali in that first match [against Equatorial Guinea] satisfied me and I was happy with what I saw, Nigerians were happy with what they saw as well but it didn’t just end there.”

Nwabali has set a new record for the longest clean sheet among Nigerian goalkeepers at the AFCON, remaining unbeaten for 493 minutes across seven matches.