‘NFF should revive Super Falcons now’
Former Super Falcons coach, Ismaila Mabo, says the team is fast losing its ground, and there is the need for Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) to revive it for the country to get better results this year.
Mabo led the Nigeria women’s national team to the quarterfinal at USA ‘99 FIFA Women’s World Cup, the best ever result for Nigeria senior teams (male and female). He was also in charge of the Super Falcons at Sydney 2000 Olympics Games as well as Athens 2004 Summer Olympics. Coach Mabo also handled Super Falcons Team B to capture gold medal at Abuja 2003 African Games. He won the maiden African Women’s Championship title for Nigeria in 1998 and also captured the second edition in 2000.
Mabo told The Guardian yesterday that the once- conquering Super Falcons was fast losing its pride both in the West African sub region and the continent at large.
“Take this as my New Year message to the NFF and football-loving Nigerians,” Mabo said. “There is urgent need to revive the Super Falcons. There is something missing in the team, and until the NFF realises it, the team will continue to wobble and fumble.
Mabo continues: “One urgent thing the NFF must do to bring the Super Falcons back to its winning ways is to do away with foreign coaches. Certainly, I do not think we can make any headway in women football with an expatriate in charge. I watched our matches at the last Women’s World Cup in France, and nothing has changed because I saw so many wrongs in the team. After the Swede coach, Thomas Dennerby, resigned, I thought the NFF would correct the situation by looking the direction of a number of Nigerian coaches who were in the race for the job, including Florence Omagbemi and Mercy Akide-Udoh.
“It is my belief that some of the coaches handling the women’s football clubs in our league can deliver a good set of players for the national team, just like I and some others did during our days. It is not too late for the NFF to correct itself. I understand Alhaja Ayo Omidiran is back as head of the Women’s football committee. It is good because she is aggressive. But I hope Omidiran will be successful like the duo of Gina Yesibor and Princess Bola Jegede. I think one of the ways Omidiran can succeed is to counsel the NFF to look inward and save Nigeria unnecessary wastage that occurs when it hire a foreigner to coach our women,” Mabo stated.
As a way of getting the Super Falcons busy in a period of long inactivity occasioned by the postponement of the 12th African Women’s Nations Cup to year 2022, the NFF Executive Committee on Wednesday approved a proposal by its Technical and Development Sub-Committee for the team to participate in a tournament in Turkey and two-match tour of Morocco in February this year.