Saturday, June 19, 2010
AUSTRALIA V. GHANA WORLD CUP MATCH, 10-MAN TEAM IS AS STRONG!
When Icheoku wrote that red-carded Sani Kaita was not the reason for Nigeria's loss to Greece, but an incompetent coach Lars Lagerback, who is not technically sound enough to make needed adjustments, we knew we were right. Australian national team Soccer-Roos has additionally affirmed and buttressed our position; - they just proved Icheoku right. They out-played Ghana with a ten-man team, having suffered a red card loss of a midfielder early in the first half, but still held Ghana to a 1-1 draw. Congratulations Aussies for a stellar performance under adversity!The result shows that no African team participating in the world cup is really prepared for South Africa 2010; which unfortunately may be the last time the fiesta will be held in Africa in the nearest future. How can these Africans not fully appreciate the stakes here - both in honor and respect, being the host; but instead they played hopelessly, purposelessly, clueless-ly and vision-lessly as if nothing really mattered. Ghana was a complete flop, a total disappointment and reckless as they could not make use of a God given opportunity to over-run a ten-man Australian side. Ghana's below-par performance against the ten-man Australian side, a lowly-rated side and weakest link in their group, playing with only ten men against their full eleven is nerve-wrecking. It is also instructive that the Ghanaians own goal came through a penalty kick, admitted it was perfectly taken and delivered, begging the question, does the Ghana national team have active strikers? Or is it another case of an incompetent foreign mercenary-coach who is not good enough to lead a team to a world cup competition, having failed to exploit such one man advantage Ghana? Simply put, the Ghana match against Australia was just another mediocre African performance by another African country at the first ever world cup competition hosted on the African continent! Ghana's failure to beat a 10-man Aussie side is apologetic and uninspired. Also yesterday, the United States of America proved what a motivated, driven and brave country looks like as they rallied from a 2-0 half-time deficit to cancel both goals; and went further to even score a would have been winning goal, but for another African nightmarish refereeing which inexplicably disallowed a world class goal by America's Edu. Icheoku hopes Nigerians are watching and seeing what big time competition is all about - a clear head and guts; so they must stop blaming Mallam Sani Kaita and instead just fire that coach Lars Lagerback, the culprit here. Coach Lagerback failed woefully to read the match and adjust a ten-man side to continue the play, himself not technically astute for such judgment calls. Nigeria should also take a cue from other well-performing footballing countries of the world by looking inside their own boarders for coaches instead of these incompetent foreign mercenary-coaches they import from third rate footballing countries. Argentina is being coached by one of their former international Diego Maradona, so is Germany, Brazil, Mexico, Italy, Spain, Japan, North Korea, United States of America and the list goes on. If Nigeria cannot hire a foreigner to be their president or governor or senator or IGP or Central bank governor etc, why must they always resort to cheap foreign coaches for their national team, expecting them to deliver on what they do not know and lacks the patriotism to give a skin in the fight. These foreign coaches have no dog in the fight and sees their assignment as a money making opportunity which they bilk to the maximum; if in doubt recall coach Clems Westerhof pulling out of Amokache and Amuneke in the world cup match against Italy when the Eagles were beating Italy 2-0 until that conspiratorially decision and the rest is history. Icheoku calls on Nigeria Football Association to immediately fire the incompetent coach Lars Lagerback for being in breach of his performance-based contract. Also they should embark on a far-reaching football reform that will de-emphasis the culture of reliance on incompetent foreign coaches and evolve a football master-plan that is both truly altruistic and enduring.