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Akwuegbu To Garba: Fix Eaglets’ ‘Leaking’ Defence Or Face Brazil 2019 Nightmare

Akwuegbu To Garba: Fix Eaglets’ ‘Leaking’ Defence Or Face Brazil 2019 Nightmare

Benedict Akwuegbu, a former Super Eagles striker has raised concern over the apparent porous defence of the Golden Eaglets currently campaigning for a possible sixth FIFA U-17 World Cup title in Brazil, Completesports.com reports.

Akwuegbu expressed dissatisfaction with the manner the team conceded four goals in two Group B matches so far played even though they won both games to qualify for the group stage of the tournament even with a game to spare.

The Eaglets came from a 2-1 deficit to peg Hungary 4-2 in their opening match last Saturday at the Estadio Olimpico, Goiania. They again recorded a 3-2 comeback against Ecuador at the same venue in a five-goal thriller to sit top of Group B standings.

But as the five-time World champions get set to face Australia tonight (Friday) in a dead rubber Group B game, Akwuegbu, who featured in Nigeria`s silver medal winning Golden Eaglets at Scotland `89 FIFA U-17 World Cup finals, said it is not proper for the Eaglets to be conceding goals the way and manner they have done so far.

In the opinion of the former Stum Graz of Austria forward, coach Manu Garba needs to plug all the loopholes in his team`s back line so they don’t get embarrassed in the tougher knock out stage of the championship.

“I believe the Eaglets are good and have what it takes to go far in the tournament,” Akwuegbu told completesports.com from his base in London on Thursday night.

Also Read – Garba: I Will Make Golden Eaglets’ Defence More Formidable

“I once represented Nigeria at that level in the 1989 edition in Scotland and I know that much as we have a good team, as always, but I feel it is very important for the coach to knock his team into a strong unit where the defence will not be conceding cheap goals in tournament.

“A strong defence gives the entire team confidence and once you keep conceding goals, the team will lose confidence and the end result is defeat.

“So, it is good that they have qualified for the next round irrespective of their ‘porous’ defence, but it is important they fix their defence because at this (knock out) stage, it could be difficult to come back once you go behind and that could rock the boat of their title ambition and cause Nigerians nightmare,” Akwuegbu warned.

The Nigeria – Australia clash tonight will kick off at 9pm Nigerian time at the Estadio Bezerrao in Brasilia. Simultaneously, Hungary versus Ecuador will take place at the Estadio Olimpico, Goiania.

By Sab Osuji

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  • Sammy 2 years ago

    Good advice! That’s my concern too. Our midfield not bad at all, and our attack can score any opposition in this tournament no matter how defensive they are. So Uncle Garba, receive the zeal, wisdom and the strength of God to fix it IJN. Amen.

  • Glory 2 years ago

    @CSN pls if it was Akwegbu that might have said they won silver at the 1989 U-17 edition, pls politely let him know, that isn’t true. Lol. Some of us here have been religiously keeping record files of our national teams performances since late 70s. Lol. That Nigeria u-17 made up of the prince of Monaco,Ikpeba, oguntuwase, bobolayefa Edom, John Agum, fantastic talent Sunny UMoru, who surprisingly faded out so quickly,was kicked outta d tournament at the quarter final, via penalties by Saudi Arabia.No chance here for anyone to bend story. God bless Lol.

    • Prince 2 years ago

      Haba CS editors 
      1989…Na Scotland (host) win silver Na …after Saudi Arabia beat them in the final fa 

    • JimmyBall 2 years ago

      Sunny Umoru… Jide Oguntuwase… Patrick Mancha… What a talent! We lost to Saudi Arabia because of a tall goalkeeper with goal-post stretching wingspan… Oboy! I think all our boys lost their penalty kicks…