Nigeria stand-in captain Vincent Enyeama believes the African champions can win next year’s World Cup in Brazil.
The Super Eagles became the first African side to qualify for the 2014 World Cup after beating Ethiopia 2-0 on Saturday for a 4-1 aggregate victory.
Enyeama believes Nigeria can become the first African team to not only reach the semi-finals but also win the final.
“(Are we going) to make an impression at the World Cup? No, we can actually win it,” the goalkeeper told BBC Sport.
“I wouldn’t be surprised if Nigeria win the World Cup one day – maybe with me. It’s just a matter of time and moment. Everything is possible. Impossible is nothing.”
The veteran international was speaking in the aftermath of Nigeria’s World Cup qualification, as he continued his fine run in goal.
He kept a clean sheet against the Ethiopians, so adding to his seven successive clean sheets with French side Lille.
Yet his confidence about a Nigerian triumph in Brazil next year flies in the face of both history and form.
Nigeria have not won a match at the World Cup since beating Bulgaria in 1998, which is the last time the Super Eagles made it to the knock-out stages.
In both 2002 and 2010, Nigeria exited the tournament disappointingly early. Nonetheless, Enyeama says his confidence stems from his strong faith in Christianity.
“I believe in God, I believe in the Bible, which says he chooses who he chooses,” the 31-year-old explained. “What if he (God) chooses Nigeria. I don’t believe in statistics and you can never rule us out.”
In the long history of the World Cup, only three African teams have ever reached the quarter-finals: Cameroon in 1990, Senegal in 2002 and Ghana in 2010.