May 6, 2010

Ikpeba chides NFF over roving Lagerback

By Tony Ubani
WITH months turning into weeks and countries naming their provisional squads for the World Cup, Nigeria’s former World Cup star, Victor Ikpeba, has criticised the Nigeria Football Association, NFA, for allowing Lars Lagerback too much time to roam around the world without much to show.


The Swede, who is still moving from country to country to see Nigerian players play in their club, has the tough task of selecting his World Cup team from the 44 he named without kicking a ball.

“It is annoying to see that we are going to the World Cup without any serious preparation and yet our coach is out there on a supposedly monitoring mission. It’s annoying to know that the man since he was employed has been drawing his salary without working for it. It’s not his fault, anyway. It is the system in Nigeria that allows for it”, Ikpeba, a former African football award winner regretted.

Regrettably, too, Nigerian players have not been outstanding and except for Chelsea’s Mikel Obi and Chidi Odia who played a handful of matches in the Champions League, most of the players Lagerback hopes to use have either been warming the bench of their clubs or have been left out completely.

But NFA officials are not worried as they still have absolute confidence that the Swede would qualify from the Group that includes Argentina, Korea Republic and Greece.

“We’ll qualify from the group and go far even to the final”, Image maker, Ademola Olajire, predicted in Lagos. With so much time wasted on team camp base for the team, it is left to be seen if the Eagles would not encounter more distractions from those who are supposed to lead them in South Africa.