Tuesday, July 16, 2019 6:02 pm
After losing the AFCON semifinal match on Sunday, July 14 to the “better team”( the Les Fennecs of Algeria), the Super Eagle’s of Nigeria Coach, Gernot Rohr has been advised by Godwin Bamigboye, the FCT Chapter Chairman of Nigeria Football Coaches Association (NFCA) to reinforce the team for the third-place match.
According to him, the third-place match must end with a win in favor of Nigeria, and the Super Eagles must come back home with the bronze medals. “They must win their third-place match so that it will be their reward for working hard to reach this stage of the competition,’’ he said.
Secondly, Emmanuel Okala, the former Green Eagles goalkeeper, on Tuesday in Enugu asked for prayers from Nigerians for the Super Eagles to beat Tunisia on Wednesday in Cairo. NAN reports that the Super Eagles will face the Carthage Eagles in the third-place match of the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) in Egypt. Okay, who helped Nigeria to win their first AFCON title in 1980 AFCON Cup, told NAN that the team needed the support and prayers of Nigerians now more than before.
“From experience, third-place matches are the most difficult matches to play, since players are going into it with low morale after their defeat in the semi-finals. However, we are wishing them well and will continue to pray for their success in the match,’’ the former goalkeeper of Rangers International Football Club of Enugu said. Arthur Ebunam, a former midfielder with Rangers International, also called on the Super Eagles’ handlers to replace the team’s current goalkeeper.
Ebunam, who also played for Mighty Jets FC of Jos and El-Kanemi Warriors FC of Maiduguri, noted that it would be difficult for the Eagles to win the match without a fresh goalkeeper. “But we will continue to wish them well and urge all Nigerians to give them all the support necessary. “The Super Eagles will continue to remain our national team,’’ he said.
Also, Ifeanyi Okonkwo, an ardent supporter of Rangers International, said while the semi-final loss was painful he was full of belief that the team could still finish third. Okonkwo urged the Eagles to put in their best and fight hard in the match.“We hope and pray for a good result and a positive outcome in favor of the Super Eagles,’’ he said.
The Team’s chief coach, Gernot Rohr must quickly reinforce his team to forget Sunday’s loss to Algeria and go on to beat Tunisia on Wednesday, some coaches advised in Abuja on Monday. The coaches said in separate interviews with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) that victory on Wednesday would be a good reward for the hard work by the players.
Some fans making sports betting, however, urged the Super Eagles not to be deterred by the 1-2 loss to Algeria at Cairo in the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) semi-finals. NAN reports that the Super Eagles, after the loss to the Desert Warriors, will now face the Carthage Eagles of Tunisia on Wednesday in the competition’s third-place match on Wednesday.
Akinade Onigbinde, the coach of FRSC Football Club of Abuja, said while the loss was a great disappointment to football lovers in the country, he still regarded the Eagles as good. “The Eagles have a very good set of players but Rohr did a wrong substitution and the tactics for the game were faulty. “The players were too slow to defend their side, compared to their opponents.
“But now they need to forget what happened on Sunday night and they should start to plan for the next match which must be a win-at-all-cost. “We need to encourage them with our prayers so that they will make the country proud in the third-place match and win the bronze medals for the country,’’ he said. Onigbinde, however, advised the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) to involve more home-based players in Nigeria’s future appearances at the AFCON competition.
Ngozi Eze, coach of the Blessed Unity Football Club of Abuja, also said the Super Eagles have performed very well since the beginning of the competition. “They have been representing the country well since the start of the championship, but it was unfortunate that they lost the game.
“We were all expecting them to put up a good fight like they did against the South Africans and they didn’t. “Now they need to put in more efforts in their last match of the tournament against Tunisia so that the country will be proud,’’ she said. NAN reports that the Super Eagles will face 2004 champions Tunisia in the third-place match at the Al Salam Stadium on Wednesday.Also, Algeria will take on Senegal in Friday’s final match at the Cairo International Stadium.