The Super Eagles have exited the Russia 2018 World Cup, this time not even making it to the 2nd round after falling to a late goal against Argentina in their last group game
And while the boys did put up a hell of a fight in the end the general consensus is that they could and should have done better at this tournament
So we exit early again proudly or otherwise with 7 nagging questions tugging at our thoughts
1.What Went Wrong Exactly?
Our preparations were solid, The boys were motivated and our jersey was the hottest thing since sliced bread. So what actually went wrong?
From poor marksmanship to technical naivety the list is a long one
But highest up that same list is an obvious tactical deficiency which bore through clearly
We were having players play wrong positions and not making the right substitutions as at when due
2.Should Gernot Rohr Stay or Go ?
The Super Eagles success or lack of it lies solely at the feet of our manager Gernot Rohr. And it would appear his deficiencies especially at the international stage are glaring.
It’s not to early to call it but Rohr is looking more like a man more competent on the local stage
Still we cannot take away the man’s qualities and he has brought some stability, discipline and organization to the team
So now the question is do we keep him on and try and build on what we have for continuity’s sake or do we get someone new and risk bringing down the foundation we have built
3.Is It Time For Mikel To Step Aside
He has been an astute leader , an icon on the pitch for the younger generation but since his move to China there have been question marks hovering over his ability.
At the World Cup in Russia more questions were asked of the Eagles talismanic leader and voices rang out at some point for him to be dropped to the bench.
Mikel is quality any day, but has dropped yards of pace
Is hel still the man to lead the Eagles to glory in Quatar 2022 or is it time for Odogwu to step aside and let a new leader emerge
4.Which Other Players Should Exit The Team
Asides the captain there a some of the players who many feel have run their race with the national team,
Many were fingered and called out during the pre-world cup friendlies and after the games proper many more were chorused to have had their time in the National team up
Is it time for players like Ogneyi Onazi Elderson Echiejile and Odion Ighalo and even Victor Moses to be eased out the team ?
5.Which Players Should Come In
One obvious shortcoming in the Super Eagles game was the lack of a cutting edge upfront
The team recorded very abysmal numbers in front of goal
Attacks fizzled out before they even started also indicating we were struggling to create
Is it time to bleed the likes of Henry Onyekuru Ebere Eze and Kelechi Nwakali into the Super Eagles
6.What Happens Next
The future begins now!
The federation should tidy up its house and begin to refocus
Next up for the Eagles is the AFCON and preparations should start now
A comprehensive plan should be drawn up with the aim of at least a semifinal place at the AFCON
The team for Qatar should be put together now and every FIFA calendar should be utilized to play friendlies against International opposition blending the team trying out tactics and formations
7.Where There Any Bright Spots
It wasn’t all gloom for the Super Eagles as there was confirmation of some real world class quality in our ranks to build on
Wilfred Ndidi was a standout and a joy to watch. He continued where he left off with Leicester and won more tackles than any other player during the 2018 FIFA World Cup group stage
Stoke city new boy Oghnenekaro Etebo was another standout who showed he would be key going into Qatar 2022. He had the 2nd most dribbles in the group stage after Lionel Messi
Francis Uzoho showed why Rohr had so much faith in him and should remain Eagles no 1 for a long time