internationals have urged policy makers in sports to go back to the drawing board and develop a new structure that would train young football players at the grassroots.
The ex-international were reacting to the Super Eagles inability to qualify for 2015 Africa Cup of Nations in Equatorial Guinea.
While decrying the poor performance of the team, the ex-internationals said that the Eagles played below the expectation of Nigerians.
The Eagles, who needed a victory to scale through to the continental showpiece, played a 2-2 draw with the Bafana Bafana of South Africa.
Eagles ended their group A matches with eight points from six games, and placed third behind the qualifying teams— South Africa with 12 points, and Congo with 10 points.
Adokie Amesimaka told newsmen that the team did not exhibit sufficient skills in the match and that the defence played as if they were playing with so much pressure hanging on their necks.
‘’They did not approach the game with flair, confidence and good football skills that had been the hallmark of a Super Eagles team.
‘’We need to learn from this and resurrect our football through the youth ranks— where young players can be well managed and groomed to quality players,’’ Amesika said.
Former captain of the Green Eagles, Henry Nwosu, said that the team had not played well enough to qualify.
‘’It is sad the way we ended the qualifying series after doing so well on November 15 against Congo in their country.
‘’The team should be disappointed in themselves for not getting the necessary result at home soil when it mattered most,’’ Nwosu said.
Another ex-international, Edema Fuludu, said that the team had no business playing a draw and failing the nation.
‘’Eagles could not rise to the occasion; they played as if they could get an easy result, hence, they were shocked by a more determined South Africa team.
‘’The team lacked team work, they were not professional about their approach,’’ Fuludu said.
Athletics: Okagbare Begins Preparation For Tokyo 2020
Blessing Okagbare, yesterday started her preparations for the Tokyo 2020 Olympics at the National Trials.
The opening day of the Tokyo 2020 National Trials will see Okagbare competing in the 100m against highly rated Grace Nwokocha
Okagbare, the 8th time national champions is the favourite to win the event again, but Grace Nwokocha remains one of her biggest threats.
The American-based track queen won the championship from 2009 to 2014 and returned to win the 2016 edition after missing out in 2015.
Despite her qualification for the Olympics, Okagbare will be hoping to continue her winning streak and go to the Olympics in high spirits.
Apart from the 100m finals expected to take place in the afternoon, there will be shotput men final with all eyes on Chukwuebuka Enekwechi.
LAA Holds Lucrative Track Meet, Next Week
The Lagos State Athletics Association has announced it would be holding a lucrative Athletics Meet on Thursday, June 24, 2021, at the Teslim Balogun Stadium.
Yussuf Alli, who is the Meet Director for the Lagos Open Athletics Championship, made the disclosure on Wednes-day even as he revealed that arrangements were in top gear to have an elite cast of athletes in the one-day meet.
According to Alli, the Lagos Open Athletics Championship will simultaneously serve as a qualifying window for the Tokyo Olympics as well as a preparatory event for athletes that have already qualified for the sporting showpiece.
“This is another fantastic window for those seeking to qualify for the Tokyo Olympics as well as those seeking quality competition to stay in shape for the Olympics,” Alli said.
“The Lagos State Athletics Association, which is one of the most vibrant in the country, is out to organise a world-class event that would be the talk of the town as we count down to Tokyo,” he added.
The list of events to be competed for at the Lagos Open Athletics Championship include, the 5,000 meters, 400 meters hurdles, 100 meters, 800 meters, 400 meters and 100 meters.
There would also be quality action in the 4×100 meters open, 4×100 meters open and 4×400 meters mixed relay.
Long jump, High jump, Triple jump, Shot put as well as 4×100 secondary schools relay and 4×100 secondary schools relay have all been pencilled down for the maiden Lagos Open Athletics Champion-ship.
Organisers have assured that the top three finishers across all the events will receive handsome prizes for their efforts.
S’ Falcons Bow To World Champions
The Super Falcons of Nigeria lost 2-0 to world champions, USA, in their final Group game at the 2021 Summer Series in Texas, USA.
The result means the African champions failed to win any of their three matches at the invitational tourna-ment, drawing one and losing the other two.
Kristen Press gave the Americans the lead on the stroke of half time, and before Lyn Williams killed Falcons hope of getting a draw with the second goal on the dot of 90 minutes.
With the victory, the world number one has now gone 42 games without tasting a defeat .As for the Falcons, the aim of participating in the Summer Series was to prepare them for a crucial 2022 African Women’s Champion-ship eliminator against perennial rivals, Ghana in October.
The African Women’s Championship will serve as qualifiers for the 2023 World Cup in Australia and New Zealand.
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