Nigeria must make sure Tuesday's match against Argentina in St Petersburg is Lionel Messi's last at a World Cup, says full-back Brian Idowu.
Argentina's campaign in Russia is veering close to implosion after Messi missed a penalty in their opening 1-1 draw against Iceland and Croatia made the most of an abject display from Jorge Sampaoli's side to run out 3-0 winners, securing safe passage from Group D.
La Albiceleste can only do likewise by beating Nigeria, who lost to Croatia 2-0 but bounced back in style to see off Iceland by the same scoreline.
Reports of a mutinous atmosphere in the Argentina camp have dominated the build-up but, by contrast, Idowu put the Super Eagles' aim in simple, uncomplicated terms.
"That would be our main goal – to make it his last World Cup game," he told a pre-match news conference when asked about possibly bringing down the curtain on Messi's career on the grandest stage.
"As much as we love to watch Messi play, he is playing against us so we only have one option.
"Of course, I would like to swap shirts with him but there are a lot of players I would like to swap shirts with in the Argentina side."
Nigeria head coach Gernot Rohr rejected the suggestion Idowu's words might have the ill-fated consequence of providing extra motivation to the five-time Ballon d'Or winner.
"No, we don't think about that. We focus on our game," said the German tactician, who expects experienced midfielder John Obi Mikel to be available despite suffering a broken hand.
"We have this great player, Messi. Everybody loves him – me personally and all our team.
"The question for us in not whether it is a last World Cup match for him or not; the question is for us to qualify.
"We are not here to watch him play, we are here to get a result. We are professional and we must defend the colours of Nigeria."
"In football, there is no mercy, there is no pity, you must not give any gifts – even if you like this player.
"He did well against Iceland and was unlucky, very unlucky, with the penalty. I think he is in good fitness and we have to be careful with him."
Argentina and Nigeria are familiar World Cup rivals.
The African nation have been on the losing end in each of their previous four group-stage meetings – the first coming in 1994. Rohr's men won a friendly between the countries in Krasnodar last November, although Messi was absent on that occasion.
This match marks a homecoming for St Petersburg-born Idowu, who has spent his career playing in Russian league football.
"I feel amazing. I saw my parents yesterday and today I met my best friend. I feel the support the people are showing me here," he added.
"I'm excited. Hopefully I'm going to give back to them and the Nigerian fans if I get chance to play tomorrow."
|Durham skittled for 61 and 66 on the same day|
|Kane isn´t a machine – Lamela defends misfiring Spurs star|
|Hazard left out of Chelsea squad for PAOK trip|
|Tiger feels close to ending drought after achieving Tour Championship goal|
|Leno in line for Arsenal chance in Europa League|
|Gazidis leaves Arsenal in good shape, insists Emery|
|Eagles bring back WR Matthews, place Wallace on IR|
|England include Stokes, Hales and uncapped seamer Stone in ODI squad|
|Suwon Bluewings 0 Jeonbuk Motors 3 (aet, 4-2 on penalties): Quarter-final comeback ends in spot-kick|
|Australia captain Paine ready to slog it out with Pakistan|
|Nadal pulls out of China Open & Shanghai Masters with knee injury|
|Ostapenko begins Korea Open defence with victory|
|Joshua v Povetkin: How Olympic super heavyweight champions have fared|
|Liverpool ´made a point´ with PSG victory - Gomez|
|Osaka wows Tokyo crowd on WTA return|
|Excited Povetkin arrives in England for Joshua showdown|
|Kovac patience with Sanches set to reap rewards|
|Kovac: Madrid strong without Ronaldo, Messi is the best|
|ATP suspends umpire Lahyani over Kyrgios ´pep talk´ at US Open|
|North and South Korea seek to co-host 2032 Olympics|
|Ampadu signs long-term Chelsea contract|
|Don´t blame Neymar, PSG players all guilty - Thiago Silva|
|Real Madrid seek to plug Ronaldo scoring gap – Champions League in Opta numbers|
|Brewers allow Cardinals to inch closer with loss to Reds|
|Manchester is still red – Depay ahead of Lyon´s clash with City|
|Orioles become first pro team to wear braille jerseys|
|Klopp hails ´brilliant´ Henderson|
|PSG attack lacked aggression, says Tuchel|
|Atletico Tucuman 0 Gremio 2: Libertadores holders draw first blood in QFs|
|Thomas plays down wrist worry|
|Rakitic wants more from Barcelona hat-trick hero Messi|
|My players aren´t s*** – Pochettino defends Spurs squad|
|Cubs reliever Morrow won´t return this season|
|Tebow expected to be back in Mets organisation next season|
|Inter can compete against anyone – Icardi revels in Champions League victory|
|Tuchel: PSG loss to Liverpool not logical or correct|
|Sturridge in best shape I´ve seen – Klopp|
|Milojevic celebrates ´fantastic´ occasion after Red Star´s 26-year wait|
|Rodrigo and Simeone salute Griezmann display|
|Seahawks DE Clark on Bears QB Trubisky: He´s nothing special|
|Carroll says Wilson has been ´over-trying a little bit´|
|Judge returns to Yankees´ starting lineup|
|Napoli boss Ancelotti takes aim at Red Star time wasting|
|Favre admits young Dortmund stars struggled in Bruges|
|Otavio would trade goal for Porto victory as he bemoans Schalke draw|
|Championship Review: Pacesetters Leeds crush Preston, Villa end five-game winless run|
|Neymar world-class but not a defender - Klopp says Liverpool targeted PSG star|
|Waiters injury update: Heat guard unlikely to be ready for start of season|
|Gojowczyk eliminates returning Tsonga in Metz|
|Liverpool enjoying best start in 57 years after PSG win|
|Galatasaray 3 Lokomotiv Moscow 0: Terim´s side make light work of Russians|
|Club Brugge 0 Borussia Dortmund 1: Super sub Pulisic scores late winner|
|Schalke 1 Porto 1: Fahrmann saves one penalty, but Otavio scores another|
|Red Star Belgrade 0 Napoli 0: Points shared as Italians fail to make possession pay|
|Liverpool 3 Paris Saint-Germain 2: Firmino strikes late as Reds edge five-goal thriller|
|Monaco 1 Atletico Madrid 2: Costa and Gimenez seal comfortable win|
|Chaos reigns in Serie B as league denies suspension claim|
|India secure Asia Cup victory despite valiant Hong Kong effort|
|Messi makes "extraordinary routine", says Valverde after Barca star surpasses Ronaldo|
|Spalletti´s Inter to take heart from Tottenham turnaround|
|Casillas features in landmark 20th Champions League campaign|
|Spurs deserved more from best performance of the season - Pochettino|
|Brown absent from Steelers facility on Monday due to ´personal matter´|
|Toronto´s Bussey given eight-match biting ban|
|Barcelona 4 PSV 0: Marvellous Messi lights up Camp Nou|
|Inter 2 Tottenham 1: Icardi, Vecino complete dramatic late turnaround|
|Allegri, Chiellini defend Costa over spitting ban|
|Firmino only fit enough for bench duty|
|Kovac applauds Sanches ahead of Benfica homecoming|
|Tomlin confirms Steelers WR Brown was absent from facility on Monday|