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Our cadet national teams need total reassessment, says Obuh


John Obuh

John Obuh

Laments ouster of U-17 team from AFCON

Former Under-17 coach, John Obuh, has stated that the Golden Eaglets’ failure to beat the Junior Menas of Niger at the weekend in the 2017 Africa U-17 qualifier and crashing out from next year’s African U-17 championship slated to hold in Madagascar, can be blamed on the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF). He said the NFF failed to strictly assess the activities of coaches and players when preparing for major championships.

Nigeria lost 3-1 to Niger Republic in the second leg, second round U-17 Africa Cup of Nations qualifier. Having won 1-0 in the first leg, Manu Garba’s boys needed at least a draw to progress to the third round of qualifiers, but they were unable to do their part as they fell to the Menas.

Speaking with The Guardian yesterday in the wake of the Eaglets 1-3 defeat, Obuh lamented that poor preparations and lack of time to select players and blend them were part of the challenges also faced by the team.

The former Flying Eagles coach, who wondered why the Nigeria U-20 coach, Emmanuel Amuneke and Eaglets manager, Manu Garba, failed to deliver in their recent assignment considering their wealth of experience in the age-grade competitions, called on the NFF to invite the two coaches to address the likely cause of the dismal outings.

He also urged the football body to fashion out strategies that would enable coaches get the best working environment, stressing that grassroots football development in the country needs to be repositioned.

“The failure of the Golden Eaglets, who are the U-17 defending champions, to qualify for next year’s AFCON is really embarrassing to the nation.”

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