Premier League stars ready for France's clash with Nigeria

France Football

France internationals Bacary Sagna and Morgan Schneiderlin look ahead to Monday's last-16 meeting with Nigeria.

Manchester City's Bacary Sagna and Southampton's Morgan Schneiderlin believe that France are prepared for their Round-of-16 game against Nigeria on Monday.

France qualified at the top of World Cup Group E to set up the clash and have looked impressive throughout the tournament so far.

Sagna, however, insists that they will not take Nigeria lightly.

"To me they are still the best African team around," the ex-Arsenal defender said. "They are currently the African champions, they have very good players - some of them play for the greatest European teams, some in the Premier League."

He added: "We know they're a dangerous team, we need to be patient, they can be aggressive, they'll fight and they have loads of assets.

"But of course we want to focus on ourselves, we want to forget everything that's around us and just get ready for the game."

Nigeria finished as the runner-up in Group F behind Argentina. They followed a 0-0 draw against Iran in their opening game with a 1-0 win over Bosnia-Herzegovina. A 3-2 loss to Argentina in their final group game was enough to see them through.

While Sagna talked up the threat of Nigeria, Schneiderlin, who has been linked to both Arsenal and Tottenham Hotspur this summer, is already looking ahead to the later stages.

"Of course we will feel the pressure progressively - the closer you get to the final the more you feel it," the midfielder said. "We need to stay in our bubble. Starting from now we should play every game as if it were the final and win it"

"All the teams left in this competition aspire to playing in the final and win the World Cup. So I think we will carry on with the same mindset and keep playing the way we do."

If France do beat Nigeria to advance to the quarter-finals, then they will meet the winners of the clash between Germany and Algeria.

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