It appears football commentators in other parts of the world appreciated Nigeria’s performance at the recently concluded FIFA Confederation Cup in Brazil despite what Nigerians might consider a ‘below par performance’.
The football blog section of the guardian newspapers of the United Kingdom had this to say about Nigeria’s performance:
“It doesn’t matter who the Nigeria manager is, or what his team achieve, the critics are always lining up, just waiting for an opportunity to snipe. A tournament in which they went out in the group stage, lost two games and beat only Tahiti, has provided plenty of ammunition, but there was plenty to be positive about.
Nigeria had the better of the first halves against Uruguay and Spain, but ended up undone by poor finishing. Brown Ideye had a disappointing tournament which compounded the absence of Victor Moses and Emmanuel Emenike with injury. The general 4-2-3-1 shape looked just as impressive as it had at the Cup of Nations earlier in the year, while Mikel John Obi, revelling in his freer role, offered a reminder that when he made his international debut in 2006 he was considered an attacking midfielder.
The full-backs – again – are a concern, but essentially Nigeria did rather better than results suggested.
While rating the runners-up, Spain, the football commentators also noted that, “Nigeria and Italy, though, perhaps encouraged by what had happened to Barcelona and Real Madrid in last season’s Champions League semi-finals, showed what could be done by attacking Spain. In those games, poor finishing and good fortune let Spain off the hook; in the final they would not be so lucky.
Let’s hope this will encourage Stephen Keshi and his boys to perform even better.