Former Super Eagles Goalkeepers' Trainer, Joe Erico has attributed the CHAN Eagles' woeful performance against the Atlas Lions of Morocco in Sunday's final match of the Africa Nations Championship (CHAN) to the inability of the coaches and players to adopt the modern trend in football.
Erico told The Guardian yesterday that Eagles' embarrassing 4-0 defeat was because the Nigerians could not adapt to the modern robust technical brand of football Morocco displayed in the final match. He advised Super Eagles' Manager, Gernot Rohr to study the latest styles in modern football when preparing Nigeria for the Russia 2018 World Cup slated to hold later this year.
He explained that the CHAN Eagles could not withstand the firepower of the Morocco because the Nigerian team lacked speed, technical intelligence and tactically sound reasoning in all departments, adding that they also did not have the strength needed to ward off the pressures from their opponents.
He said the same pattern would be used by Nigeria's opponents at the World Cup in Russia, adding that Rohr's team must be ready to match any team strength for strength at the Mundial.
He advised Nigerian coaches to go for refresher courses on the latest trends in football, saying that Nigerian clubs playing continental games cannot succeed when faced by tactically good teams from North Africa, who are already abreast with the current developments in football.
Erico, however, urged Nigerians not to write off the domestic players because of the loss to Morocco, saying the players better coaching to excel in the game.
"I said before the players departed for the competition that they were not packaged well. If you don't groom a child well in primary and secondary school, there is no way the child can survive at the university.
"The final game against the host nation is a lesson for Nigerian coaches, players and especially the Super Eagles manager, Rohr. He should expect that Eagles' World Cup opponents like Argentina and Croatia would also come with speed and tactical intelligence, which the Moroccan team used to outshine the CHAN Eagles.
"He needs young lads to achieve this feat. Modern football has gone beyond kick and follow. Nigerian players should be groomed to adopt the latest trends in playing free kick and corner kicks," he said.