By Isaac Olamikan, Senior Correspondent, Benin
Former Nigerian national soccer star, Tony Emodofu, has warned the country’s sports lovers not to expect too much from the Super Eagles as they file out in a friendly match against the Brazilian national team in Singapore on Sunday.
Emodofu believes that the Nigerian players should use the opportunity provided by the match to learn some soccer artistry from their opponents who are miles ahead of them in all aspects of the game.
“I don’t believe that the Super Eagles will do anything fantastic in that match against the Brazilians in Singapore on Sunday. On that basis I cannot be coerced into making any prediction that the Super Eagles will beat the Brazilians.
“Take note that the Brazilian national team has at least four sets of players. The list of their players that would be facing the Super Eagles is made up of highly rated players who have regular places in their different clubsides across the world.
“Can we say the same thing about our own players? Outside a few like Wilfred Ndidi, Samuel Chukwueze and Alex Iwobi which other Nigerian players are regulars in their clubs?
“Take a look at our defenders. Which of them plays regularly for his clubside? And these are the players we are expecting to stop the highly rated Brazilian strikers in the match.
“As far as I am concerned, we should go to Singapore with the mindset of being students out to learn a few tricks from the Brazilians. Boasting that we will beat them is out of it. It’s a tall order.”
On the ouster of Nigeria’s female football team from the 2020 Olympic Qualifiers and also the males from the WAFU Cup, Emodofu said: “It is a shame that Nigeria will not be represented at the two events.
“Over time our teams have been performing abysmally. One of the reasons for this is administrative deficiency. Also the players now place monetary incentives above patriotism.
“In our days it was a mark of honour to wear the national colours. The trend has changed completely now. We should also not forget the issue of godfatherism which has been a clog in the wheel of progress.”