Former Nigeria coach, Adegboye Onigbinde, says the only way the interim coaching crew of the Super Eagles led by Austine Eguavoen can succeed is if they get sound administrative backing from the Nigeria Football Federation, Completesports.com reports
Onigbinde served on two different occasions – from 1983 to1984 and 2002, as interim coach Nigeria. He was first engaged to coach the Green Eagles in 1983 after Brazilian Otto Gloria was sacked following the team’s failure to qualify for the 1982 FIFA World Cup and also their inability to defend the AFCON title at the Libya 1982 edition. He led Eagles to win the Silver medal at AFCON 1984 in Cote d’Ivore. He also got another chance after Amodu Shaibu was fired in 2002 and he led the Super Eagles to the Japan/Korea 2002 FIFA World Cup where the team couldn’t progress beyond the group stage.
While fielding questions from Completesports.com concerning the sacking of Gernot Rohr and appointment of Austine Eguavoen as a stopgap coach, Onigbinde, 83, reiterates that the NFF knows better in their decision to fire and replace the German.
“The people directly in charge must have their reasons for taking such decision, but for delaying such decision for five years baffles me. However, the decision has been taken and one prays that the new set of technical handlers of the team would face their job squarely,” Onigbinde, a former CAF and FIFA Instructor, told Completesports.com.
“One thing Nigerians usually forget or which they want to ignore is that coaches handling a team cannot achieve success alone without sound support from the administrators and that is one thing I have suffered in the handling of the national team on the two occasions that I have been there. I just pray that the administrators will this time around back up their decision with sound support for the technical crew
Onigbinde, a Modaleke High Chief, added: “It is rather funny that a man had been with the national team without a stable side for five years. Five years is much. I don’t want to make it sound as if I am trying to play myself up, but in 1983, I had barely one year to prepare a team for Africa Cup of Nations finals, and we came second. I am not complaining, but I knew how we finished second instead of winning the cup.”
According to Onigbinde, what the Supper Eagles coaching crew need to perform well is sound support from the administrators (NFF) and the public since most technical crew members who were incidented to handle the team are still there.
By Richard Jideaka, Abuja
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