BY ONOCHIE ANIBEZE
Twenty four hours after Nigeria’s 2-0 victory in a Nations Cup qualifier against Rwanda coach Stephen Keshi was in a relaxed mood in his hotel room in Calabar.
He reviewed the match and said “the building process continues and we will invite few more players and see how we will continue to blend.”
On Saturday he blamed some lapses on pressure and hoped that, with time, the players would get used to big occasions. He still harped on it yesterday and added that with more matches the players will display better organisation and discipline in match execution.
Armed with a football book on tactics, he showed this reporter the tactical approach he has adopted and pointed out why the team had not perfected it. But he hoped that they would later get it right even if it means adjusting not only on positional play of the players but also bringing fresh legs.
”It will not be wise to make many changes at a time. W are going on break now but we will continue the search for good players and more players at home and abroad will be given chances. The boys we have now will also get better with time.
I know what I see in training and what they do in match situations and I know that pressure affects them. If we had a tough and big league with thousands of fans watching games this problem will not be there. They would get used to big occasions and play their normal game in match situations.
I have been talking to them to take matches as if they are the same game they play in training and note that the only difference is the jerseys that they are wearing. The moment they get that feeling right and forget about the crowd you will see a much improved side. There will be a time good crowd will inspire rather than overwhelm them.”
Keshi commended the boys for the victory against Rwanda but warned that tougher tasks lie ahead