By Richard Animam & Kate Obodo
While Super Eagles first World Cup opponents-Argentina, are already plotting how to humiliate Nigeria, former Super Eagles manager Chief Adegboye Onigbinde is at a loss about the players with whom Lars Lagerback wants to prosecute the World Cup.
Chief Onigbinde who led Nigeria to the World Cup in Korea/Japan 2002,Â said it is difficult to believe that with just a few days to the kick off of the World Cup in South Africa, Nigeria does not know who will fly the countryâ€™s flag at the event, adding that his greatest fear is that NigeriaÂ does not have a team and there is nothing to assess.
â€œI donâ€™t think we have a team on the ground, so there is nothing to assess. This was the same thing Shaibu Amodu did and he was sacked.Â Lagerback is doing the same thing and nobody seem to be bothered.
Nigerians and the NFA have always fingered local coaches when they fail but have they sat for once and thought of how to improve these local coaches. The local coaches are as good as the foreign ones if not better.
â€œI believe the problem with Nigerian football is basic. It is not the coaches but developmental.Â Instead of a foreign technical adviser, a foreignÂ football administrative adviser who will be saddled with advising those who administerÂ football in Nigeria, should be engaged, because it is crystal thatÂ those who are in the NFA do not have an idea of how to move the game forward,â€ he stressed.
The former Shooting Stars Football Club of Ibadan coach heaped the blame of Nigeriaâ€™s lackadaisical preparation for the World Cup on the doorstep of the NFA.
â€œMany foreign coaches have come and gone and I have often said that the problem with our football is developmental. Everyone blames the Nigerian coach,Â saying that they are inexperienced. But the question is, what has the NFA done to improve the lot of the local coaches?
â€œWhen you talk of football development, you are not talking about football alone.Â It entails both the coaches, players and theÂ administrators.
Like I said before, we need an administrative adviser who willÂ tellÂ us what we are supposed to do.
I have seen coaches brought to Nigeria who do not have a good background but at the end learnt so much from us. I have so much respect for Clemens Westerhof but when he came to Nigeria, what was his background? And when he left Nigeria what did he achieve in the countries where he worked?â€ Onigbinde queried.
Lagerback last Monday in Abuja released a provisional 30-man list and by June 1 2010, he is expected to unveil a final list of 23 players.