Vanguard (Lagos)

26 January 2013

Nigeria: Eagles Need New Attitude to Make an Impact, Says Lawal

Atlanta '96 gold medalist, Garba Lawal has said it is not impossible for the Super Eagles to become one of the front runners in the race for the coveted trophy of the Africa Nations Cup in South Africa.

Lawal, a former left back of the team said despite playing a 1-1 draw with Burkina Faso, Monday and Zambia Friday, the Eagles can still gain advantage in the group if they approach the competition with a new attitude and determination, stressing that the players should know that football has changed.

He however, added that there is still hope the team could come out tops with the last group match.

"I believe we are still in the race as others. The onus is on the players to prove themselves because they can do it if they bring out their hearts and play," he said, adding "But I think also that they may well do this with focus, new attitude and be totally committed to making a success of this competition."

Continuing, he said, "In the remaining games, players should avoid such mistakes and not be complacent as it happened against Bukina Faso when they threw away the match in the last seconds of the tie.

As professionals, such critical moment is not when to lose concentration. They should keep their cool on the ball to prove to opponents they are in the competition for serious business."

Lawal, who played in the Ghana/ Nigeria 2000 and Mali 2002 Nations Cup, said he believed the technical crew have packaged a team capable of representing the country well and players on their part should rise to the occasion and see every opponent as a threat that just must be overcome with the sole purpose of returning to winning ways as demanded by Nigerians who look up to the team for something to celebrate.

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