Shuaibu Amodu can breathe a sigh of relief temporarily after his less than impressive ‘Super’ Eagles managed to scrape out a dour single-goal victory over their regional neighbours, the Squirrels of Benin. But can any Nigerian truly assert that they too can breathe freely?
Many football fans would no doubt answer in the negative, as the display of the team was only typical of the level of competence of the man in charge. With this victory, Amodu and his gang of Chicken-breeders have only succeeded in pushing forward doomsday one game further.
Though there was a slight improvement in the team’s play relative to the first outing against the current champions, the Pharaohs of Egypt, the team still maintained that incoherent and untidy attitude. The lack of technical play in the team was all too evident, and the team was unable to manage one single counter-attack during the entire game. They were static, with no fluidity amongst the various departments; reflective of Amodu himself, who wore a perplexed expression throughout the game.
The Nigerian team’s showing was as interesting as watching paint dry. The side provided little exciting soccer artistry, if they still remember what that is, and it was just the individual determination from certain players that kept the side going.
Without any form of prejudice, I boldly assert that the better team lost on the day. The Beninoise team were unfortunate not to have won the game, and a little more experience on their side would have come in handy. Had Stephane Sesegnon and Rasaq Omotoyossi been a tad more clinical in their finishing, the Eagles would have broken through new lows.
Danny Shittu was undoubtedly the best player on the Nigerian side, closely followed by Dickson Etuhu, who was doing the quiet and yet dirty job in the middle of the pack. If these two players had not instilled their individual brilliance on the day, Nigerian fans would have been singing a much different song now.
Much like the first game, Yakubu Aiyegbeni still continued to show his poor form, missing arguably the best chance of the evening for the Nigerians. My grandmother would have tucked away the sitter he threw away early in the first half.
His penalty kick that gave the team the game’s goal was also far from impressive, and only the poor judgment from the Beninoise goalkeeper ensured the ball lazily strolled into the back of the net.
We should remain truthful to ourselves at this moment. The Nigerian team is still in tatters, and the short-term remedy lies in a total overhaul of the technical bench.
Ward Seven Emerges Winners Of Oyigbo Chairman’s Cup
Ward seven in Oyigbo Local Government Area (LGA) Rivers State, has emerged winners of 2021 edition of the LGA Chairman, Hon. Akara Okechukwu, Football Competition tagged “Unity Cup”
The final match which played at Afam Secondary School field, in the area, at the weekend, witnessed a huge crowd and saw Ward seven beat hard fighting Ward two team 2-1 to lift the trophy.
While presenting the trophy to the winners Hon. Okechukwu, said the tournament was one of his achievements recorded by his administration.
The chairman who was represented by the vice chairman of the LGA, Hon. Oko Ngozi, expressed happiness over the successful tournament.
“It is joyful seeing the tournament put smile on the faces of youths” Hon. Okechukwu said.
Speaking at the event, Chief Emmanuel Nwaorgu ,Agu Na Echemba 1 of Umuwezu described the tournament as a symbol of Unity among youths in Oyigbo.
He noted that the idea of bringing the youths together through football by the chairman speaks volume of his intention to rebuild Oyigbo.
According to him, the chairman has rekindled the hope of the people in governance hence he should be given full support to succeed.
The Ex footballer use the forum to commend the governor of the State, Chief Nyesom Wike, as he transformed the State.
“ I commend the Chairman over his meaningful and human oriented projects carried out within the short period in office” Chief Nwaorgu said.
Also speaking the chairman of the organizing committee and Special Adviser to the chairman on youth and sports, Chamberlain Moses, said there is need to celebrate the chairman as he is fulfilling his electioneering campaign promises.
“The chairman during his campaign promised to organize Unity Cup for talent hunting and foster unity among the people of Oyigbo, now it has come to past” Moses said.
Also, the chief protocol officer to the chairman, Patrick Eweremadu said the chairman deserve commendation for using football to unity the youth.
Bane Community Holds Unity Walk, Fitness Exercise
People of Bane community in Khana Local Government Area,in Rivers State, held their fourth edition of its annual walk fitness exercise programme tagged” I walk, jog and run”.
The programme was part of activities lined up during the new year festivity celebrations in the community.
The colourful event saw massive participation including men, women, youths and children that came out for the exercise that took off from Bane to Kwawa and back to Bane.
Bane community is the home town of the famous environmental and human rights activist late Kenule Saro Wiwa.
The programme was sponsored by Mene- Senewo Ikpobari Dumletam, miinagbe the second, Mene Nyorzorgor in colloboration with Project Poetry Bash (PROPOBA) and Bane-Kenwigbara Historical society (Ban-Ken HS)
Speaking during the programme, the coordinator of the event, Mr Ipenu Barinua Clement explained the importance of the programme, saying that exercise helps to promote good living and healthy life
According to him, one of the reasons of the event was to promote unity and love among the people, adding that the crowd that participated in the programme was a clear testimony of unity and peaceful cohesion in the area.
Clement opined that the sporting event was also designed to enhance the general wellness and fitness of the people of Bane and promote brotherly love, peace and unity among them that will in turn propel development in the community
“We walk to exercise the body ,we walk to release the mind ,sports promote unity and with unity you can do everything such as developments .you can see the crowd ,sports is good to the body and it brings unity and togetherness among the people” Clement said.
Also speaking, the sponsor of the event , Mene Senewo Ikpo Bari Dumletam, thank the people of the community for coming out enmass to make the programme a colourful one.
He advised youths to abstain from any activities that will not promote the good name of the community and society.
“Avoid what will bring bad name to the family and community at large and continue to be good ambassadors of vanguard of peace, let our community continue to be peaceful” he stated.
In her reaction, one of the female participants ,Miss Friday MeebeeBari expressed gratitude to the organisers of the programme ,saying that the event always bring people home from all spectrum of the society to the community every year .
By: Amadi Akojubi
Eguavoen Blames Watford For Dennis’ AFCON Withdrawal
The interim boss of the three-time champions has revealed why one of his in-form forwards had to pull out of the squad for the biennial competition
Super Eagles interim boss Austin Eguavoen has blamed Watford for the decision to remove Emmanuel Dennis from Nigeria’s 28-man squad for the Africa Cup of Nations.
Dennis was initially in Nigeria’s squad for the biggest African showpiece, starting on January 9 in Cameroon.
However, on Friday, he was replaced in the squad alongside Victor Osimhen, Leon Balogun and Abdullahi Shehu, a decision that angered many Nigerian fans.
While the reason for Osimhen, Balogun and Shehu’s withdrawal was revealed, the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) did not provide the reason why Dennis was taken off the list.
However, before his removal, Watford manager Claudio Ranieri had claimed the club were looking to stop Dennis from going because his invitation came in late.
Eguavoen has now confirmed that it was Watford that did stop Dennis from going, even though the 24-year-old did his best to convince the club.
“We tried to reach out to the club, and the club is like, no, we will not allow Dennis to go, Eguavoen told newsmen.
“And Dennis also told me that his club had done everything humanely possible for him not to be at the AFCON.”
“I can’t force it. I reported the matter to the authority, they also tried.
“That was why we had to wait until about the last second before we pushed the button.”
“Dennis says he wants to come, but the club is threatening him, Eguavoen added.
Four replacements have now been called up for the quartet removed from the squad, and Eguavoen revealed they were all happy after receiving the call.
“I only found Onyekuru once, and he was happy about it. Initially, he’s been an integral part of this team, and I felt bad that some of them wouldn’t be around, but the decision has to be made.
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