By Philip Adefioye
Hiring of a new Technical Adviser to handle the Super Eagles, three months to the first ever FIFA World Cup on the African continent, has been described as an unnecessary venture.
Former Deputy Governor of Lagos State, Femi Pedro told Sunday Vanguard sports in an exclusive interview that the Eagles will not go far at the World Cup despite the coming of Swede gaffer, Lars Lagerback.
â€œThere is absolutely nothing the coach can do because of the short time. There is no miracle that he can perform to make the Eagles perform wonderfully well to the expectation of Nigerians.
I think what we should be doing now is to concentrate on the 2012 Africa Cup of Nations and the 2014 World Cup slated for Brazil which gives us a clear four and halfÂ years to plan. Lars Lagerback should not be the coach to prepare us for 2010 but for 2014 and he should start searching for young and talented players now.
We should use the next 2012 Africa Cup of Nations which will be co-hosted by Gabon and Equatorial Guinea as a spring board to prepare for the 2014 World Cup.
The last Nations Cup in Angola exposed our weakness as a footballÂ nation. We paradedÂ a bunch of tired legs, players were half fit and we had a technical crew who seem not to have any clue at all. I must say I was very disappointed.
I donâ€™t think any major or radical change could be implemented within three months. What we need to do is to search for new talents that can take Nigeria far in the World Cup. The World Cup is not a childâ€™s play, it takes years of hard work, perseverance, training and improvement in the technical aspect on and off the pitch.
If we expect any magic to be performed by our team at the World Cup, we are making a mistake. Nigerians should lower their expectations. If we really want to be sincere to ourselves, if we go beyond the preliminary stage, it is major achievement. Look at our performance at the Nations Cup, in fact since after the 1994 squad, Nigeriaâ€™s football has gone down,â€ Pedro said.