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‘Super Eagles still have a long way to go’


The international friendly between the Super Eagles and Democratic Republic of Congo at the Adokiye Amiesiemaka Stadium on Monday was expected to give Nigerians an insight into what their darling team would do at the Russia 2018 World Cup, which begins on June 14.

And so every Nigerian faithful that had the means to get to Port Harcourt was at the Adokie Aimiesimaka Stadium in the Garden City for the game.

The expectation was sky high and the weather made the surface good for good football. But there is this saying among the streetwise that if you didn’t expect anything you would never be disappointed.
Unfortunately for the fans, there was no reason to expect anything other than good football after what the Super Eagles did during the qualifying series. Alas, they left the stadium quite disturbed.

The World Cup is less than two weeks away and yet their team has become a shadow of the all-conquering side that even defeated Argentina 4-2 less than six months ago.

The Super Eagles have another tune up game against the Three Lions of England on June 2 at the Wembley Stadium, which some believe could be better than what the Eagles put up on Monday. But the doubts were so thick in the air after the 1-1 draw on Monday.

Monday’s game was one that Coach Gernot Rohr had planned to use in assessing some of the fringe players angling for inclusion into the final World cup team. But it left the fans wondering if Nigeria was up to the challenge expected in Russia.

Some of the fans excused the Eagles’ poor form on the bad state of beautiful stadium’s pitch, but others argued that the DR Congo players dominated the game on the same pitch.

Many of the fans questioned Rohr’s decision to bench some senior players throughout the game even when those on the pitch proved incapable of subduing the Congolese.

Speaking to The Guardian, a fan, Eddy Ndubusi, said he did not see any understanding between the midfielders and the two strikers. “There is a lot of work to be done on the midfield to ensure the midfielders combine well with the attackers. Without the ball the attackers cannot make things happen.

“We also need to encourage our boys to be adventurous before the start of World Cup. I believe that Odion Ighalo would have made an impact unlike the player (Simeon Nwankwo) that played the striking role.”

Also unimpressed with the Eagles performance against DR Congo on Monday was a foreign TV producer, who identified himself as Robert. He said the Eagles have a mountain to climb when the World Cup begins.

“To be honest, I don’t think there is much to appreciate in the Nigerian team. The players could be playing to avoid injuries that could rule them out of the World Cup. But I wish them best of luck because they will need a lot of it if this is all they can offer at the World Cup.”

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