By Ben Efe
Former Eagles coach, Jo Bonfrere, has declared himself available to lead the national team to the 2010 World Cup in June in South Africa.
Bonfrere who led Nigeria to win the soccer gold at the Atlantaâ€™ 96 Olympics said in a phone interview from Belgium that if given the chance he would take Nigeria to the World Cup final.
â€œThe team stopped in the semi-final in Angola. If Iâ€™m given another chance with Nigeria, I will do better by getting them to the final of the World Cup,â€ Bonfrere told mtnfootball.com.
â€œWork for the World Cup must start immediately, not two weeks to the tournament and with the right preparation, Nigeria have the quality to take the world by storm.
â€œI know a good number of these players as well as their mentality because I spent over six years in Nigeria. I also know the country. I have the experience and we all know I won the Olympic gold with this team.â€
Bonfrere argued that it will be useless to hire a big name foreign coach for the Eagles as he would not be able to go down to the basics to dig up talents.
â€œGetting a big-name coach will kill the team. It will not help Nigeria. You need someone who is ready to work, a coach who will give players in the local league a chance to fight for a place on the World Cup squad.â€
BonfereÂ who was brought into Nigerian football by fellow Dutchman, Clemens Westerhof, said the Eagles were a shadow of themselves at the last Nations Cup.
â€œThis was no team, there were no tactics and most of the players were used wrongly. They did not play good,â€ he said.
Bonfrereâ€™s last job with the Eagles was the qualification for the 2002 World Cup.