Nigeria coach Stephen Keshi believes that pace was key to their 4-1 win over Mali in their 2013 Africa Cup of Nations semifinal on Wednesday.
The Super Eagles attacked with speed on the flanks as well as through the middle, and never allowed Mali to settle into any passing rhythm in the middle of the park.
“I know the Malian team, they are a very good team and they have quality players like Keita,” said Keshi after the match.
“But they are a little bit slow so we took advantage by attacking quickly and keeping the ball on the ground.
“I dedicate this victory to God and the people of Nigeria because they have missed out on a great deal over the past years and they have been looking for this.
“I don’t know what’s going to happen in the final; we’ll prepare ourselves towards the game and we’ll see what comes out.”
Meanwhile, Mali coach Patrice Carteron played down Keshi’s previous experience as coach of Mali as the prime reason for their downfall.
“There is no relationship between what happened today with the Nigerian coach (Keshi); he knows certain players but he doesn’t know all the players,” said Carteron.