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No harm in friendly matches for Eagles — Akosa

By Philips Adefioye

The former  President of the Nigerian Coaches Association, NCA, Austin Akosa says there is nothing bad in organizing one or two friendly matches for the Super Eagles ahead of their next World Cup qualifier against the Carthage Eagles of Tunisia in Abuja in September.

The only problem he said he sees in it is that the players would be  in their various club fighting for shirts for the new season which kicks off in August.

“There is nothing wrong in playing friendly matches but for now these players are fighting for shirts in their various clubs because the league season will start in August. You know what it means to the players, they are all preparing for the new season, that is what they live on. They are paid a minimum of twenty-five thousand pounds weekly and you want them to come and play friendly matches, Akosa asked.

“But after that we can assemble one or two friendly matches in Europe not in Nigeria in order to keep them together as a team. If we can’t make it, let them come and play Emyinba or Sharks FC, there is nothing bad there but the most important thing is to play as a team because we are still parading individual skills.”

The CAF-FIFA match commissioner said that it was unfortunate that Nigerian coaches are still depending on  certain players in the midfield who can not give accurate passes to the attackers, stressing that such are the things coach Shaibu Amodu should look into.

“It is unfortunate that we are still depending on certain players for the midfield. You ca notice that some of our mid fielders can not give accurate passes and it is painful that a professional player can not make an accurate pass to his own mate, instead he passes the ball to his opponent and that is very peculiar with Mikel Obi.

“Go and watch the video tapes of all our matches, you will be surprised that there are so many wrong passes from our players and you call yourself a professional player? These are the few things Amodu should look into.
Look at the playing days of Austin Okocha, you see him giving killer passes to the wingers that will result to a goal but we hardly see any of it these days. Oliseh was very good, late Mudasiru Lawal was fantastic, Amodu needs to look for better mid fielders that will help the attackers, otherwise to get goals will be very difficult,” he said.

Concerning the return of  Okocha from retirement, Akosa said “it depends on Amodu and Okocha himself, if he is still in a position to help the Super Eagles, but he should search his conscience if he is still good.”
Every thing depends on the coach, I don’t think I need to comment much on that. Is he in a position to help the Super Eagles? Is he fit enough? He should search his conscience and  if he feels he is still capable, let him go there but every thing still depends on the coach,” he said.


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