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Onye advises Shittu, Adokiye reacts

Kingsley Onye expressed outrage when Lars Lagerback selected the likes of Kanu Nwankwo and Daniel Shittu for the World Cup and left out Victor Anichebe. His grouse over Shittu was that the central defender “did not play one match for Bolton throughout the season.” He felt that Kanu’s age would not make him useful to Nigeria at the World Cup and would have preferred Anichebe.

But the World Cup has started and while Shittu started Nigeria’s match against Argentina, Kanu sat on the bench. Onye analysed Nigeria’s game and picked special interest on how Shittu played.

“We must kneel down and thank God over Vincent Enyeama’s incredible saves. We would have conceded five goals. Enyeama was in a world of his own. I saw Shittu struggling throughout. I saw him going into opponents’ goal area for every corner kick, every free kick and even every throw-in.

That’s wrong for a defender who didn’t play a match for his club because I’m sure he is not 100 per cent fit. That’s by the way. He is a defender and should do his job well. I think that he tried but he must not go for every ball in the attack. The biggest problem we had was Chidi Odia. I was shouting where I watched the game in South London. He couldn’t mark and he gave the ball away easily. Instead of playing simple football he tried to show skill and blundered.

Did he know he was playing in the World Cup? The coach has a lot of work to do. I hear that Nigerians are celebrating. I really don’t know why. From what I saw, a lot of work still needed to be done. I hope that they win the remaining two matches and qualify.

To do this, we must be tight in our marking and must shoot more at goal. The midfield was not linking the attack and the coach has to work on this.”

For Adokiye Amasiemeka, “nothing much has changed tactically and otherwise.” “But for Vincent Enyeama how many goals would we have conceded?

“Lagerback repeatedly said that he would not pay special attention to Messi but did you see what Messi did to us? Cameroun dealt with Argentina in the 1990 World Cup because they placed somebody on Maradona and that reduced the forays from the icon.”


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