Lagos – Paul Hamilton, a former coach of the Super Falcons, on Wednesday warned Coach Stephen Keshi of the Super Eagles not allow distraction truncate his success so far in the senior national team.
Hamilton, commenting on the Sept. 7 World Cup qualifier against Malawi in Calabar, said on telephone that Keshi now needed more concentration than ever.
“Keshi has been successful so far in his quest to qualify Nigeria for the World Cup and so should not allow for distraction at this crucial hour.
“By now, Keshi should have overcome the issue raised by Malawi citing insecurity in Calabar and remain focused because the match will decide Nigeria’s chances for the last round of the qualifier.
“He should try and focus on winning this match, that’s my opinion. He has a task at hand which is winning the match against Malawi in Calabar.
“It’s purely mind games to distract him from concentrating on the job at hand; things have been working well for him so why stop now because of this glitch.
“The Malawians knew that Keshi has not lost at that venue before and so was trying every means to detract Keshi from concentrating,’’ he said.
On the acceptance of 23 players submitted by Keshi by the Technical and Development Committee of the Nigeria Football Association, Hamilton said it was a sign of more success for the coach.
“I’m happy the list was accepted by the NFA, Keshi knows the team and players best so he is in the best position to pick those that can go together.
“He has been building them for a while and they have a pattern and I think if he goes with that, the Eagles will do good,’’ Hamilton said.
He then called on Nigerians to give their utmost support to the Eagles on Sept. 7 to ensure final round qualification.
Nigeria is topping Group F with nine points needed a draw in the match to qualify for the last round of the qualifier.
The Flames of Malawi, however, needed to win the match to qualify for the final elimination round.
The Flames are expected to arrive in Nigeria via Accra on Sept. 5. (NAN)