BY PATRICK OMORIODON, Calabar
Coach Stephen Keshi has dedicated Super Eagles 1-0 win over the Brave Warriors of Namibia in a 2014 FIFA World Cup qualifier to the victims of the plane crash that occurred Sunday in Iju, on the outskirts of Lagos.
The Super Eagles celebrated the narrow win, with a perfect strike by Ikechukwu Uche in the 80th minute, even though they dominated possession and could have scored at least five goals.
The Nigerians were made to fight hard for the win, which Coach Keshi, admitted during a post-match conference, was made tough er by the depressing news of the ill-fated plane crash which they learnt of before the commencement of the game at the U.J Esuene Stadium in Calabar.
Keshi, while describing the crash as a sad and painful development which showed the vanity of life, prayed God to grant the families of the crash victims the fortitude to bear the loss.
“We dedicate this win to all the victims of the plane crash. It was a very tragic one and we actually got the news before the match and it depressed us because these are Nigerians like us. We were pained and just had to goon the pitch to play for them. This is a very sad day and we can only pray that God will grant the families of the departed the fortitude to bear the losst”, said an emotional Keshi.
On the match, Keshi said that it showed that there were no small teams in African football, giving the stiff opposition that the Namibians gave to the Eagles.
Keshi added that even supposedly small teams, now come to Nigeria with the intention of beating the Super Eagles in competitive matches, a situation that he said his charges were not going to allow in the ongoing World Cup qualifying race.
He said that his strikers were unable to score early because of the defensive play of the Namibians.
Keshi promised to work on the attack, which lacked the cutting edge ahead of this weekend’s qualifier against Malawi in Blantyre.