By Jacob Ajom & John Egbokhan
A new era for Nigerian football appears to be on the horizon as Coach Samson Siasia’s new-look Super Eagles, to night at the Teslim Balogun stadium, soared to a deserved 2-1 win over the Leone Stars of Sierra Leone. Taiye Taiwo converted a penalty and Warri Wolves’ Ekhigo Ehiosun clinically scored the second goal for Eagles. Sierra Leone pulled one back late in the second half.
After successive failures at Nations Cup and World Cup competitions, the reputation of the Eagles took a battering as opposition teams played them to a standstill in competitive or friendly matches.
Judging from what panned out both countries attached much seriousness to the game which held on a FIFA free day and on the basis of what was seen, Nigerian football may be heading in the right direction.
And though the match started 20 minutes late, the intensity that the players brought into it, was just a teaser of what was to come as new faces likes Ahmed Musa, Joel Obi, Peter Utaka, Emmanuel Emenike and Ekhigo Ehiosun, played well, impressing an expectant Lagos fans, who paid them their homage with enchanting tunes that made the night the more sonorous and colouful.
Siasia introduced more local players, raising hopes that a new eagles team was in the making especially when fans saw most of the old players struggling to keep pace with the new ones.