By Lexi Elo
The Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) has praised the Golden Eaglets despite finishing third at the 2015 Suwon Continental Cup International Youth (U-17) Football Tournament in Korea. The Emmanuel Amuneke-led side that lost in a 3-2 dramatic manner to Croatia in their last game had earlier posted a 1-1 draw against Korea and earned a 2-1 win against eventual winners, Brazil.
NFF board member, Alhaji Ahmad Kawu and Deputy General Secretary, Dr. Emmanuel Ikpeme praised the young lads for their overall performance and good conduct in Suwon.
“You have done well despite the fact that you lost to Croatia today in a dramatic way because but over the three matches everybody saw you are a good side and we are confident you would get better before the World Cup in Chile. This is just my little appreciation to you and I want to commend the technical crew for a good job. I believe this team will get better before we get to Chile,” Kawu said.
Ikpeme said the Golden Eaglets looked promising. While six players of the 21 that earned the FIFA U-17 World Cup Chile 2015 ticket at the African U-17 Championship were in Suwon, Ikpeme added that the tournament was a good platform to expose the new lads.
“I was in touch with the NFF president, Mr. Amaju Pinnick and he was happy that you have gained exposure and experience by coming for this tournament. You have done well but the ultimate gain of this competition was the exposure; we want you to block the loss to Croatia from your psyche and refocus your attention to Chile, Ikpeme said.
Sept 2nd: Korea 1-1 Nigeria; Brazil 2-1 Croatia
Sept 4th: Nigeria 2-1 Brazil; Korea 2-2 Croatia
Sept 6th: Brazil 2-0 Korea; Nigeria 2-3 Croatia