June 19, 2024
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Nigeria 0 Burkina Faso 0 – WAFU B U-17

My Take

All I saw was the match highlights and I must commend the coaches for putting together a bunch of very talented youngsters who despite barely knowing or playing together showed brilliant flashes of what to come if they are kept together and given quality friendly matches for team cohesion.

Going by their first competitive match as a team, one can visibly see purposeful football, team cohesion, sense of urgency, solidity, and an evident pattern of play. Worthy of mention is the Man-of-the-Match and team captain, Simon Cletus who is very skillful and has the presence of John Obi Mikel, but faster which makes him a proper diamond in the rough. If well nurtured, he has the potentials of becoming an incredible attacking/creative midfielder.

They are clearly a breath of fresh air compared to the other age grade team coached by lifetime coaches without a clear-cut plan neither a visible pattern of play other than the ‘kick and follow’ medieval style of football.

Let us not even talk about players recycling and questionable age of some players from yummy like academies.

I will hope the managers of these youngsters will ensure they are sent to places their skills will be honed to make them solid finished products, without bothering about the other age-grade categories until NFF decides to employ capable and competent coaches for them.

They will easily make it to the Super Eagles in the nearest future if they are decently exposed to the right leagues to match their talents.

It is only a matter of time; this crop of youngsters will become unstoppable!

©Ifeoluwa Leo
Your Sports Analyst

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