• Sunday, March 03, 2024
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Why Keshi is not the right man for Eagles’ job

Following a shambolic display against Congo and South Africa in the qualifiers for the Africa Cup of Nations, it is becoming clear that Stephen Keshi, coach of the Super Eagles and the man who led Nigeria to win her third AN title after a 19-year wait, may not qualify Nigeria for Morocco 2015.

A boring 0-0 draw ensured that the Super Eagles are win-less after two matches in the 2015 African Nations Cup qualifiers.

Time is running out, and with just four matches left in the qualifying series, the African champions are in danger of not making it to Morocco.

The draw left Nigeria with just one point in third place behind Congo, who has six points, South Africa, four points in first and second positions respectively.

It is early days though, but the signs are dark that the African champions are struggling to match up with the early lead in Group A.


However, the game against the Bafana Bafana confirmed that the previous match was not a fluke; rather, it confirmed a clear picture of how ordinary Keshi’s team has become.

This is very evident in the team’s two poor and boring and disappointing AFCON qualifiers against Congo and the Bafana Bafana of South Africa.

Although the so called ‘Big Boss’ had spent three years trying to assemble a team that won the last African Cup of Nations and also guided the Eagles to round of sixteen at the just concluded world Cup held in Brazil, one of Keshi’s problems is his consistent error in team selections, which he has failed to improve on.

The team still hopes and rely on luck to win matches.  The defence of the Super Eagles has gone from bad to worse as was clearly shown in the match against Congo a few weeks ago. The inability of the back four to coordinate properly with the goalkeeper shows the technical lapses of Keshi who could not figure out solutions to the Eagles defence.

The midfield lacks creativity, ball passers and runners with the likes of Chelsea bench wormer, Mikel Obi, playing like a learner after spending almost ten years in the position for club and country. Mikel over the years have chosen not to play football, and has obviously lost focus on the pitch.


The attack lacks bite and pace and rather than the team progressing, it is retrogressing, raising doubts and questions about the future of these Keshi’s team.

Does Nigeria have the luxury of time to build another team at the expense of not making it to the African Cup of Nations?

Nigeria should not renew the contract of coach Stephen Keshi because he has no fresh ideas to bring to the Super Eagles.

It is a dangerous situation for the reigning African champion, but it then means that they will have to win their remaining four matches to be able to book their qualification, and its back to the same old “permutations and combination” that greets every other national team involvement in any tournament.

Its obvious that Keshi has lost it; perhaps not thinking as he ought to. The performance against Congo and South Africa is a clear picture that Keshi needs to upgrade on his technical skills. The style of play did not match the quality of the African champions and are on the brink of not defending the trophy the won just two years ago.

To boost the chances of Nigeria making it to Morocco, NFF should as matter of urgency and desperation get a new handler for the Super Eagles before its too late.


I advise that Nigeria should not renew Keshi’s contract, but go for a top class, reputable coach that can lead the national team to greater heights in soccer.

Nigeria needs a coach that is disciplined, technically and tactically sound; who can take total control of the team, introduce fresh ideas and hungry players as well as turn the team into a more compact and fearsome one that can create history.


Anthony I. Nlebem