ABUJA – Kashimawo Laloko, ex-Technical Director of the Nigeria Football Association (NFA), has expressed concern over Nigeria’s performance against Iran in their first group game at the ongoing World Cup in Brazil.
Laloko, in a telephone interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Monday, said the country’s hope of moving into the next round had dimmed, having played draw with Iran.
According to him, the Super Eagles are supposed to pick the maximum points against the Iranians and then hope for a win or draw against Bosnia-Hersogovina for them to think of second round.
He noted that the absence of Osaze Odemwingie from the start of the game caused the team the three points at stake.
‘‘I don’t know why the coach Stephen Keshi left Osaze for so long on the bench.
‘‘Osaze should start and finish any of the team’s match if it must make anything out of Brazil,” he said.
Laloko, however, said the Super Eagles could bounce back and still qualify for the second round if Keshi could get his selection right in the next game.
Meanwhile, some residents of Kubwa in the FCT have expressed disappointment in the ability of the Eagles to survive the World Cup group stage after their goalless draw against Iran.
James Uzondu, a football fan who watched the match at FF-2-2, a popular beer parlour along Kubwa market road, told NAN that Nigeria was now in a tight corner for not beating Iran.
‘‘For me it will be difficult for Nigeria to survive since it was difficult to beat Iran.
‘‘I don’t know how we can beat Bosnia and Argentina with this type of performance.
Another football fan, who only gave his name as Edosa, said most of the players were not fit for the match.
Edosa cited a situation where some of the players were going down at any slight tackle.
He said the team must be hard and strong to be able to survive Bosnia.
Miss Bassey Inyama, who also watched from the joint, pointed at Juwon Oshiniwa, Efe Ambrose, Ogenyi Onazi and Kenneth Omeruo as players that impressed in the match.
She expressed regrets at the injury sustained by defender Godfrey Obabona, noting that it would seriously affect the team. (NAN)