By Philips Adefioye

Former African Footballer of the year, Victor Ikpeba says the hiccups in Nigeria’s football system has caused dwindling fortune in the game of football in the country.

Ikpeba told Saturday Vanguard sports in Lagos that the people controlling football in this country should go back to the grassroots in order to start from the beginning which is the only solution to rescue the mess Nigerian football was facing.

One time Standard Liege football club of Belgium player said that the slim victory the Eagles had over the Black Mambas of Mozambique in Abuja last Sunday was nerve-wrecking, advising that the last match in Kenya next month should not be taken for granted.


He charged the Eagles not to be discouraged about their previous matches but advised them to forge ahead.
“We still have a slim chance to make things happen if truly we want to qualify for the 2010 World Cup in South Africa. They should not let the 2-2 draw against the Carthage Eagles of Tunisia to distract them, the lone goal victory against Mozambique in yesterday’s (Sunday’s) match was still not enough. The last matches between us and Kenya and Tunisia against  Mozambique will determine if we are to celebrate or not.”

I still remember on the way to Japan/Korea 2002, Senegal came from the third position to pick the sole ticket from their group to the World Cup for the first time in the history of Senegalese football, the same might happened to us,” he opined.

Concerning the exit of the Flying Eagles from the U-20 World Cup which ended in Egypt yesterday, Ikpeba said that the damage has be done and the next thing is that the technical committee of the Nigeria Football Federation, NFF, should go back to the drawing board and make the necessary  amendment in order  to come out from the calamities that have bedeviled the country’s football.

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