Pillar of Sports, Dr. Orji Uzor c,yesterday went poetic describing Nigeria’s historic 2-1 away victory over Zambia in Ndola as the beginning of a new era which will shake global soccer in the near future.
Speaking in Abuja after receiving a couple of football die –hards who came to celebrate the triumph in his house, Kalu who could not conceal his joy, urged Nigerians to brace up for a new brand of football from the revitalized Eagles.
He said ; “I saw a different bunch of Eagles against the Chipolopolo. The team played as one cohesive unit, something we last saw in the Golden days of yore. I saw tactical discipline and maturity as team leader Mikel Obi marshalled the Boys to action. Indeed, the Eagles have landed. They made my day.”
The former Abia State governor further highlighted the character of the team when he explained that beating Zambia at home was a feat which should be given more than the usual round of applause.
“The Zambians are a very tough nut to crack. In 1973, they beat Nigeria 5-1 in Lusaka. General Yakubu Gowon had to disband the team. That was the same Eagles squad that had earlier in the year won All Africa Games gold. That drubbing cost the nation a place in the Egypt ’74 Nations Cup. As KK Eleven, they also stopped the Eagles from going to Egypt’ 86. Even when the Super Eagles won the South Africa 2013 Nations Cup, they could not defeat the Zambians “ he added.
Kalu charged the Eagles to hit other group opponents as hard. “ This is the time to bury the ghost of the Indomitable Lions of Cameroon. I believe in this team. Under Christian Chukwu and Emma Okala, Eagles beat them 1-0 in Yaounde in 1974. Okala was in goal. Their keeper was Mbala. They had Roger Milla, Doumbe Lea, Gregoire Mbida. We featured Chukwu, Haruna Ilerika and Jossy Dombraye. Eagles also defeated them 3-2 at away after a 1-1 draw in Ibadan in 1969. Ganiyu Salami was part of that squad, “ he said.