2026 WCQ: Draw Against South Africa Better Than Losing —Finidi

2026 WCQ: Draw Against South Africa Better Than Losing  —Finidi

Super Eagles head coach Finidi George has said that his side’s 1-1 draw against Bafana Bafana of South Africa was better than losing.

For the third game running, the Eagles had to come from behind to draw 1-1 after recording the same result against Lesotho and Zimbabwe.

A second half goal from Fisayo Dele-Bashiru saw the Eagles share the points with South Africa who took the lead through Themba Zwane.

The result means the Eagles are in fifth place on just three points after three games.

“Overall, it was not a bad second half from our side, ,” Finidi said in his post match. “I felt we should have done a little bit better, enter the game a little bit quicker it didn’t happen so we conceded that goal.

“But I think the players reacted so well in the second half. It is not the best result that we wanted but a draw is better than losing and we will get our heads up and see how we can win the next match.“

The team will hope to record their first win of the qualifiers when they travel to Côte d’Ivoire to face Benin Republic.

The Cheetahs of Benin Republic secured their first win of the qualifying campaign with a 1-0 win against Rwanda.

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  • “Dr. Drey 2 hours ago

    Hahahahaha. South Africa still has another 6 home games to play out of their remaining 7 games in this qualifiers o (4 home games against Nigeria, Rwanda, Lesotho and Zimbabwe and 2 “away” games against Lesotho and Zimbabwe in South Africa)……LMAOoo!

    I hope everyone is listening….LMAOooo

    So yall should better buy calculator that can even calculate when rapture will take place”

    Finidi does not still get the memo. 6 home matches for RSA and they are already topping us. FIFA and stadia allocation sef.

    Where is Deo? The “Onuachu-lover”? Seriously, if players can just stroll in to camp two days to a match and not only walk straight to the first team but even play 90 minutes, that tells one the coach is a small boy in power play.

    5 hours of football and 3 draws with 2 home fixtures that should have home advantage? The next match days after Monday is March 2025 so na bottom of group we go still dey like this? I can’t bet that these eagles will beat Benin republic. Never. With less time to recover and RSA having an extra day. I first dey watch world cup for TV before. Lookman and Co including the very match rusty but still first teamers might as well follow me to do so. Nonsense.

    • Kenneth 1 week ago

      Last time i checked, Rwanda defeated same south Africa (They will now say it was a raining that why they lost), You can all keep laughing. When the previous coach played two draws with less fancied teams una no chop off his head, abeg let him breath. Talk to your over-weight and over pampered players. If he didn’t start lookman now it is people like you that would be insinuating rubbish. I just worry for Finidi because this is more like a set-up. But God will prevail.

      • Kenneth you’re wrong. I am sorry to say this but you are wrong. Let us look at it this way:

        1..Finidi has shown he is clueless right from the beginning.

        2. I always use the match against Mali as a reference point of how clueless he is. It shows he is not an intelligent coach. How can you leave players on the bench in a friendly in a match you need to score goals. Against Mail leaving ademola, sodiq and Tella on the bench was awful. And no explanation has been given till date. Even if they don’t score at least do your own. It shows he is confused.

        2. For these two matches in the world cup qualifiers. His invitation was questionable.

        3. Semi Ajayi only played some minutes in the last 5 matches of his club. Yet you invited him to come and do what.

        4. Semi is not getting younger. 343 formation covered him at afcon. The same with ekong too.And also Bassey too. The reason they all excelled in a 3 man defence.

        5. I have noticed this and have always talked about three man defence to cover the weaknesses of this team.

        6. I made some noises about the central defence when I saw this list. Semi was not fit but a Gabriel Osho who played more minutes was not invited. Is finidi blind to leave out Igor ogbu. Even tourinaya clicked more playing time in Belgium.

        7. But finidi showed his lack of understanding about this team and the players. We should not deceive ourselves. Prior to afcon bassey has not really done well for us in a two man defence. Check the records. Even ekong had lost pace. We also had an akpoguna who was also struggling too. So the best bet was the three man defence that made all of them excelled st afcon with ekong becoming the MVP.

        A wise coach should have observed that and stick to that. Bassey messed up and Ajayi asked to be substituted. Tanimu who we don’t know his form because our Finidi thinks he is better than the one who plays in the EPL.

        Finidi surely needs help.

        How can he justify inviting only six Central defenders for two important matches and one is not fit, another played in one useless Tanzania and one like awaziem is serial calamity.

        Findi is definitely clueless.

        Pesero observed we were conceding cheap goals and not scoring many goals, he chose a pattern that will make us concede less goals even if we don’t score more goals.

        I will never fault him for using 343 at afcon. That was smart. If he had used 433 or 424 he was using before afcon, we would have lost out in the group. Look at the goal we conceded in the first match at afcon. The man changed the pattern in the second match.

        A smart coach will set a pattern that suits the players at his disposal.

        One thing that Rohr did for us (though I am not s fan of his) is that he showed us how 352 can suit us with the friendly against Argentina which we won. That was even when ekong and balogiun were younger.

        So we should look for defenders that are fit and younger if we want to continue to play 433. We will stop conceding stupid goals like the one we conceded against South Africa today. The boy made a messs of ajayi and bassey to score. Very embarrassing.

        Finidi will destroy this team. Errors are too much. And it’s even too early in the day.

        He said it is not his duty to convince players to play for the team. What a statement from a clueless person.

        He almost caused a captaincy problem with his interview

        He has sent Tella away from this team with his foolish decisions in the friendly against Mali. That boy opted for personal reasons but we know.

        Imposing one Tanzanian player on us and even playing him off position

        Not calling a left back in the first place. We thought he was going to use Bassey but wait for it,

        He pushed Osayi there!!!

        Made so much unnecessary noise about home based but can’t trust then to play. Sodiq should have played instead of Tanimu at right back if he was sure home based players are good.

        Benching Boniface for onuachu. What a decision!!!

        Using dele Bashirru with iwobi for the first time in the middle. When onyedika, Yusuf are on the bench.

        You will see him stick to his follies in the match against Benin.

        I wonder who is giving him the foolish confidence he is demonstrating.

        It’s so sad that a coach can be this clueless.

      • Daniel script 1 week ago

        stop the blame! Finidi’s boys played very well yesterday. Forget about drawing the match at least there are certain kind of play we enjoyed watching them yesterday!

    • Selfmade KING 1 week ago

      Nigeria have to watch South Africa 

      They  ll  buy the Zimbabwe and Lesotho matches!

      Or Zimbabwe ll switch their venue to South Africa like they did against Ghana or both Lesotho and Zimbabwe ll make South Africa their home grounds 

    • Hassan Tia 1 week ago

      Findi is clueless coach who is not with magnitude for Super Eagles stature , he did many errors and mistakes with tactic and line-up of SE , just like he put Osayi Samuel as left back that he should have to put bassey or Kenneth Igboke as pure left- footed player, he also put Tanimu as right back , he is pure center back , he allowed unfit Ajayi to play this game with lacking fitness so he committed the error which Zwani scored South Africa goal , also the other big error was that Findi allowed the ponderous Onauchu to play 80 minutes instead of to allow mild and zesty player Terem Moffi who also has an exprience than Onauchu; I think Findi will destroy this team then with these errors if he continues with these mistakes , he will banish SE from the next World Cup with South Africa has four home matches and tow away ; SE has tow home matches with four away , if Bafana Bafana win these four home games and win away game and draw an other away I think they will be in USA and Canada 2026; if SE win tow home matches and loose one away also make one draw away they will banish away from USA and Canada 2026, so SE must win tow home games and at least win three away matches and draw one , if SE are beaten in one of these matches also I think their dreams to go to the World Cup will be evaporated ; I advice Finidi in the next matches to summon fit and experience players like Kenneth Omeruo, Odion Ighalo who has strong finishing also he should summon new strong players like Ego Igbo , Moses Usor ; also he must change his formation to 3-5-2 which makes balance between defence and attack also it controls the midfield …

      • dave Law 1 week ago

        Point of correction, the first goal was a fault of two defenders mainly! Tanimu did not go with the run of the south African goal scorer before he was through on goal, also Bassey did not cover himself in glory standing like a statue, while the player went past him like he was not there. Go and watch the replay over again, Ajayi tried to put in the block but to no effect.

  • So Finidi wants to tell me that he selected Paul Onuachu over a fit and ready Taiwo Awoniyi yet he knew he was going to play this type of tactic. and he wants to tell me that Awoniyi would not have executed the game plan better. Hmmmmmmm Finito

  • josh 1 week ago

    While we all want Nigeria to qualify for the world cup, is it set up that made Finidi bench Moffi for Onuachu and not use Boniface. Is it a set up that made Finidi to play or use rookies in a match of this magnitude. Why ignore players like Awoniyi, put Boniface on the bench for a player that has proved time and time again that he cannot lead Nigerian attack.

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