SUPER EAGLES: AGENDA FOR LAGERBACK
Super Eagles: Agenda for Lagerback
Friday, March 12, 2010
With about three months to the beginning of the world's most glamorous football event billed for South Africa this year, the newly appointed Technical Adviser to the Super Eagles, Lars Lagerback and his Nigerian assistants really have a lot of work to do to make appreciable impact in the soccer fiesta.
Although, the Swede was given a mandate to reach semi-final at the mundial by the Nigerian Football Federation (NFF), we think that with realistic projection and planning, the national team could go farther, and even reach the finals. But, this can only come with hardwork and being focused.
The new helmsman, who has good knowledge of Nigerian football and the team, should give a new lease of life to our soccer, which currently is at its lowest ebb. It is this reason that made Nigerians to clamour for a highly knowledgeable and tested foreign coach that would take the Super Eagles to the soccer tournament.
It would be re-stating the obvious to say that the round leather game thrills Nigerians a lot and occupies a central place in their hearts. Anything done to give the team the needed verve and impetus that would make for a credible and memorable outing in South Africa in June would be highly appreciated by football-loving Nigerians.
Therefore, Lagerback should form a team that can match and contend with the best in the world. A high quality and technically strong Super Eagles is very necessary for this order to be fulfilled within the short time frame. For the dream to be realized, the entire coaching crew and the players would need to work in concert with the new man in charge.
We want to see an end to the constant wrangling in the Football House over allowances and other matters that had in the past impacted negatively on the team's performances. The new coach should rise above the politics of the NFF and concentrate fully in making the Super Eagles a world class team. Also, the football authorities should allow the new coach to be. He should be allowed to choose the players and determine the pattern. This has become necessary because unwarranted meddling in the past with the coaching crew had contributed to the lack-lustre performance of the team.
The team must rediscover the original Nigerian flavour and style of play that made it distinguishable from other teams in the past. Besides, good selection of the players is necessary at this crucial stage for a successful outing. The era of automatic shirt and place in the team is gone for good as the new man has promised. Players should get places in the team based on their track record of performance.
Lagerback should scout for some home-based players that have style and creativity. This would inject new blood and steam into the national team. The current form of the players should determine who plays. The Swede should work in harmony with his Nigerian assistants-Austin Eguavoen and Daniel Amokachi. They should work as a team. There should be no room for condescension Their collective goal would be to make the Super Eagles soar high in the first World Cup to be held on African soil.
With adequate preparations, there is no doubt that the Super Eagles can even go beyond the set target of semi-final as earlier stated. Aiming at higher targets, at times, propels one to achieve greater results than aiming lowly.
Since the NFF has shown greater commitment by meeting some of the obligations to the new coach, Lagerback should do all things possible to see that the team performs excellently to meet the expectations of Nigerians.