Ex-House members warn against consortium of indigenous coaches for Super Eagles

Defending champions the Olympic Eagles of Nigeria got off their campaign at the 2019 U-23 Africa Cup of Nations on a dour note following a 1-0 loss to Cote d’Ivoire at the Al Salam Stadium, Cairo, on Saturday evening.

Two former members of the House of Representatives, Hon. Godfrey Ali Gaiya and Hon. Lumumba Dah Adeh, have opposed recent calls by some Nigerians for the Nigeria Football Federation to appoint a consortium of indigenous coaches to lead the Super Eagles to the 2022 AFCON and the 2022 World Cup playoff.

Following moves by the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) to terminate the contract of the present technical adviser of the Super Eagles, Gernot Rohr, some Nigerians are of the opinion that instead of wasting money on another foreign coach, competent Nigerian coaches should be assembled to lead the Super Eagles in their future engagements.

However, Hon. Gaiya, a former Chairman of the House of Representatives Committee on Sports in the sixth Assembly told Daily Trust yesterday that the call for a team of local coaches for the Super Eagles is a call for more confusion.

“We cannot talk about Nigerian coaches at this moment. The truth is that most of them lack the necessary technical know-how to coach this team. Going by the mentality of Nigerian coaches, if he sees that the players are earning higher than him, the complex will set in.

“Such a coach will find it difficult to look at the players’ faces and ask them to sit up. So we need a foreign-based coach who has seen it all and can tell the players to sit up or get out.

“Sincerely speaking, we should just look everywhere for a competent foreign coach who befits the status of Nigeria as a footballing nation,” said Gaiya.

In the same vein, another former federal lawmaker from Plateau State, Lumumba Adeh, said those calling for a consortium of coaches should remember what happened to the Super Eagles at Japan/Korea in 2002 and correct themselves.

“I want us to go back to history and ask the question when we experimented with a consortium of coaches at Japan/Korea 2002, how did we fare?

“We tried it and I think it is one of our worst outings especially coming after our appearances at USA 1994 and France 2008. I don’t think it was a successful one.

“With all due respect to indigenous coaches, I don’t know who among them can command the respect of the Super Eagles players. There will be the problem of complexity and respect.

“So if it must be a Nigerian coach, it should be a foreign-based Nigerian in the mould of Sunday Oliseh, Samson Siasia or Emmanuel Amunike,” said Lumumba.

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