By Emmanuel Okogba

Most football pundits and fans were not completely happy with Moses Simon’s outing during the first leg of the World Cup play-off against Ghana last Friday.

On two or more occasions, the Nantes forward tried unsuccessfully to dribble past Ghanaian defenders but failed at it, losing the ball in the process.

Moses impressed at the just concluded Africa Cup of Nations in Cameroon and won the hearts of Nigerians and even Africans, making the best eleven of the group stage.

While coach Austin Eguavoen was blamed for Nigeria’s loss to Tunisia at the AFCON for not being able to read the game and understand that his tactics were not working, a section of Nigerians equally blamed Moses Simon for continuously trying to dribble past tall Tunisian defenders who came with a game plan of double-marking both him and Samuel Chukwueze who were operating on the flanks.

This approach adopted by Moses any time he is fielded needs to be reviewed, according to football analyst, McAnthony Anaelechukwu.

“I think Moses Simon is fond of playing to the gallery. At his level, I don’t think he needs to be dribbling like he did at the Nations Cup”, McAnthony said in a chat with Vanguard.

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“You are up against Ghanaian players that are no-nonsense players. They are playing right in front of a capacity crowd and you expect them to just watch you dribble and make pranks. No, it doesn’t work that way.

“Twice Moses Simon tried to dribble, twice he lost the ball, and he still wanted to maintain the same style of play. I expected Eguavoen to have taken him out of the game much earlier. I surprised he was left on the pitch alongside Samuel Chukwueze. I think Eguavoen got it wrong there.

“I expect Eguavoen to keep Simon on the bench for the second leg. We don’t need to use wing play for the Ghanaians again. Let’s play direct football and see what it gets us.”

Nigeria will host the Black Stars of Ghana on Tuesday. Kick-off time is 5 PM

Vanguard News Nigeria

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