Nigeria vs Cameroon: Ebonyi fans give praises, knocks to Super Eagles list

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Some soccer fans in Ebonyi have expressed mixed feelings over the calibre of players invited by Super Eagles Coach Gernot Rohr for the World Cup qualifier against Cameroon.

Super Eagles training

Rohr invited 23 players to camp for the encounter billed for Uyo on Sept. 1 and Yaounde on Sept.4.

The list consists of 22 foreign based players and one home-based player. He also placed on standby seven players made of four foreign-based and three home-based players.

The fans state that retaining the entire team that fell to South Africa in an AFCON 2019 qualifier in June was suicidal while others reasoned otherwise.

Bright Ibe, former Chairman of the Nigerian Referees Association (NRA), Ebonyi Chapter, said that Rohr would have invited players with requisite experience for the clash considering Cameroon’s pedigree.

“Players such as Godfrey Obaobona, Efe Ambrose, Nnamdi Oduamadi, among others, should have been invited to avoid the lethargic performance of the youngsters paraded against South Africa.

“Cameroon as African champions are buoyed by its FIFA Confederation Cup escapade and can only be dismantled by an experienced side,” he said.

Benson Imagwe, defunct Ebonyi Angels Goalkeeper, faulted the retention of Daniel Akpeyi in the team after a poor display against South Africa.

“Fans are still nursing the pains caused them by Akpeyi’s performance against South Africa. His matter is worsened by his loss of first-team place in his South African club, Chippa United.

“Rohr should have invited the CHAN team and Plateau United goalkeeper Dele Ajiboye for the clash,” he said.

Princewill Udoh, a lecturer, also faulted the retention of some players, especially in the defence.

He said that the defence might be an “easy pie” for the rampaging Cameroonian strikers.

“Chidozie Awaziem and Elderson Echiejile outing against South Africa was poor and the matter is worsened by the absence of another natural left-full back to cover Echiejile.

“Rohr is only left with the option of fielding untested players such as Mikel, Agu, Ola Aina, among others; the situation is dicey,” he said.

Chief Sebastine Elem, a retired public servant, however, said that the coach was right to select the players because the time was too short for changes in the team.

“The Eagles would have less than one week to train before the match and it will be difficult for Rohr to field players that are new to him.

“He wants to give the players an opportunity to correct the South African poor showing but we would have wished for a lesser opposition than Cameroon,” he said.

Judith Odoh, a female musician and soccer enthusiast, noted that the return of players such as Victor Moses, Odion Ighalo, Mikel Obi, among others, would definitely strengthen the team.

“Soccer fans should support the team because the team even if deficient cannot be changed overnight,” she said.


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