Wednesday, July 3, 2019

t is yet another clash of the titans; a clash between two African power houses in soccer. Two countries with a rich and beautiful history in soccer and with a history of intense rivalry between them, in soccer.

Nigeria versus Cameroun is a clash any soccer fan would not miss; regardless of the sacrifices involved in watching what would likely be an epic confrontation between two usually well -matched teams.

The first round of the AFCON 2019 is over. The knock-out phase is here; and these two great soccer nations would have a go at each with one of them exiting the tournament at the end of hostilities!

The performance of both teams in the first round cannot be used to predict their likely performance in the knock-out phase. Certainly for Nigeria, that has the tendency to be inconsistent. A team that performed somewhat below expectations in the first round of the competition, but has the capacity and capability to rise up to the occasion as demanded in the knock-out phase. The Super Eagles have done it quite a number of times in the AFCON. In the 2013 AFCON, the Super Eagles had a rather below average performance in the first round and barely made it to the knock-out phase. They were paired to meet the dreaded "Elephants" of Ivory Coast and tournament favourites! The whole world including some Nigerians wrote them off, as having no chance whatsoever against the "Elephants" of Ivory Coast. Yours sincerely together with some die-hard Super Eagles' supporters against 'conventional wisdom' predicted a Super Eagles' victory! Yours sincerely then wrote an article on my face book account titled: " Super Eagles of Nigeria: Raise ! Raise !! Raise Up your game!!!; the Ivorians are beatable." Indeed the Super Eagles of Nigeria did raise their game and not only surprisingly took out the Ivorians, but went on to win the 2013 AFCON tournament.

In this light, Nigerians and all Super Eagles' supporters should not lose hope based on what the Super Eagles have exhibited so far. Like as earlies stated, if they mean it , they can do it!!!!!!

How can the Super Eagles of Nigeria get past the "Indomitable Lions" of Cameroun?

Me thinks the first battle is the "psychological battle", which must be won before other battles. Yours sincerely has no fears here as Nigerians are damn bloody fighters!!!!

Secondly, Coach Rohr should formulate the right tactic for the match. In this wise, yours sincerely proposes the 3-5-2 formation for the Super Eagles of Nigeria, for the following reasons:

  1. This system will afford more players(five) in mid-field than the 4-3-3 formation; this is crucial as this will counter the likely and known mid-field dominance of the "Indomitable Lions" of Cameroun.

  2. It will afford the closer association of the: defensive, mid-field and offensive lines of the Super Eagles. The advantages will be stated later in the article.

  3. It will afford the Super Eagles more creativity in mid-field, as Coach Rohr can deploy two creative mid-fielders to the fray.

  4. It will make for players' mobility:

    1. The likely twin strikers' partnership in the formation, will compel mobility on the part of the strikers, in the absence of conventional wingers. This will make the strikers less likely to be marked out by the opposing defenders!

    2. The mid-fielders will in addition to playing their traditional role, also fill in for defenders(=the defensive mid-fielders) and for the attackers(= offensive mid-fielders).

  5. This formation will likely make the Super Eagles less predictable, since they have so far used the 4-4-2 and 4-3-3 formations.

  6. A tactical formation which will make the Super Eagles more difficult to contend with by opponents, as the usual spaces sometimes associated with the 4-3-3 formation, will not be there ( as a consequence of the closer association between the defensive, mid-field and offensive lines).

  7. It will make the players work more for each other, as a consequence of the 'blurred' defensive, mid-field and offensive lines. And thus play better as a team!

Coach Rohr knows which players fit best to his tactical proposition. Yours sincerely mentioned these players in my earlier article titled: " The Super Eagles of Nigeria have been unconvincing so far!"

In conclusion, your sincerely believes that if the Super Eagles of Nigeria can raise their game, they will get past the "Indomitable Lions" of Cameroun! All Nigerians and their other fervent supporters are solidly behind them.


Also at the link below, one can come into contact with a number of items, needed to support the Super Eagles at "EGYPT 2019" !!!!!


The book "Super Eagles of Nigeria : Pride of Africa", can also be gotten through the author. One can contact the author through : nwokeji.cyril@gmail.com Please note in this case, payment of postage costs will be necessary