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‘Eagles’ Attack Still Needs To Be Worked On’  –Eguavoen 

‘Eagles’ Attack Still Needs To Be Worked On’  –Eguavoen 

Austine Eguavoen says a lot of work still needs to be done on the Super Eagles attack ahead of the 2021 AFCON in Cameroon which will commence in two days time.

The Eagles beat Cameroon club Coton Sport 2-0 in a practice game in Garoua on Friday.


Goals from skipper Ahmed Musa and Samuel Chukwueze, earned the Eagles a comfortable win.

But interim coach Eguavoen stated that the coaching crew still need to work on the attacking third of the team.

AFCON 2022 Zabira

“In front of goal we are too few and that’s what we have to work on,” he said on NFF TV after the game.

“Crosses were coming, ball possession is good, playing to the side which is our strength is very good but arriving in the box with fewer players is not so good and that is what we are going to work on in the next few days.”


Also Read: Salah Makes Final Shortlist For Best FIFA Men’s Player Of The Year Award 

However, he praised the players for their overall performance.

“We played two sets of teams, first half 11 players and in the second half another 11 players just to see how they can fare and cope with the weather condition. We struggled a little bit with the weather but in terms of ball possession and movement I think we were very impressed. Winning this game is a very good thing for us.”

The Eagles starting 11 for the practice game had the likes of Maduka Okoye, William Troost-Ekong, Wilfred Ndidi, Joe Aribo, Chidera Ejuke, Kelechi Iheanacho, Ahmed Musa and Taiwo Awoniyi.

And speaking on how the starting 11 fared against Coton Sport, the 2006 AFCON bronze medal winning coach said:”They did very well, it’s a little difficult to compare both teams and we missed a couple of chances and we scored only one goal. Second group came on missed a couple of chances also and scored only one goal. So the result is Nigeria two Coton Sport zero.

“Like we know it’s a practice match nobody wants to go full force because we have to try and play safe a little bit but however we are impressed by everyone that came in.”

And on whether the tactics during training were well executed by the players in the course of the practice game, Eguavoen added:”Yes we did but at some point we didn’t just because of fatigue. The ball movement was a bit faster which we required and as for the players they were doing that. But as the game progressed fatigue started setting in so the ball movement became a bit slower. But whenever they recuperate they will always go out there and do exactly what we want them to do.”

By James Agberebi

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  • Mirah 3 weeks ago

    Well done coach. It’s good you’re taking notes of match details, work on that team and fix all perceived lapses. The Lord is your strength.

  • 2 goals and none from the main strikers? Maybe they still need more matches to gel with the team set up and play pattern. For now, we might still have to fall back on experienced leg Ighalo upfront as starter – as Rohr did for the remaining crucial WCQ matches after the CAR fiascos in Lagos

  • Yinkus 3 weeks ago

    Well I don’t expect strikers most especially those strikers that have not really play well enough with eagles to just hit off the ground like that.

    Thank God egu was able to discover this on time, work more on them in the training, adopt style that will suite them so that they can deliver.

    Work more on how eagles can score from free kicks and corner kicks.

  • Oakfield 3 weeks ago

    “Playing to the side which is our strength “… How can a coach in his right senses reveal or make public the strenght and weaknesses of his team just few days before a major tourney to the public??? Your opposition must have sent out spies to monitor you during the friendly and you yourself added more information to what they already have by yourself!!! I think u talk too much mr man!! Huuuu!

  • Walking 3 weeks ago

    It’s a mind game in both cases.

    It either makes or Mar the team.

  • My initial observations of Eguavoen’s first Super Eagles instalment based on the tune up match against Coton Sports:

    1) The nucleus of Rohr’s starting 11 might form the spine of his (initial) match day squad. The likes of Okoye, Ekong, Ndidi, Aribo, Ejuke could be handed starting berths.

    Implication: the spells of continuity of aspects of Rohr’s approach to manpower selection rather that a radical departure. It bodes well for their chances of going far in the tournament

    2) Eguavoen utilised the 4-2-3-1 formation throughout the match. This is the same approach Rohr used to demolish Algeria, Cameroon and Zambia for the 2018 World Cup qualifiers. The German, by and large, used this as his default formation throughout his controversial reign as Super Eagles gaffer.

    Implications: if Eguavoen persists with this constellation, it will be something this set of players are very familiar with which further entrenches the theme of continuity from Rohr’s reign. Again it should make it easier for them to achieve blending.

    3) Wing play and overlapping fullbacks: the Super Eagles were so quick to release wingers with long balls from the middle of the park. As Eguavoen himself noted, the only thing missing was having enough bodies in the box to profit from those crosses. With Onuachu absent, the likes of Awoniyi and Umar will have to work on their positioning and aerial prowess.

    Implications: I think there will be a bit of departure from Rohr’s approach here. The German seemed to favour more inverted crosses. Eguavoen might end up erring on the side of the traditional outside-in crosses and more low cut backs.

    With the right balls from midfield, Super Eagles wingers should be able to perforate many a defences in Cameroon. How to add quality and variety to those crosses/cut backs and to have enough bodies in the box to finish off the work are areas they need to nail on the head.

    I can boldly predict that the agricultural brand of football that we were subjected to in the dying embers of Rohr’s reign will make way to a bit more swagger, finesse and flair from this Super Eagles.

    Gernot Rohr said something that I find interesting. The German said it was a fine line to tow to balance playing sexy football and getting results.

    So if Eguavoen’s ward manage to pull off playing vibrant, free flowing beautiful football, will this come at the expense of a good result?

    Only time will tell. We haven’t go that long to wait.

    • Gudmonin @deo,e don tey. Wow u still give this ur detailed analysis.

      First up,I don’t see why a new coach should be directly announcing his team’s strength at this time. If he copied it from dem Guardiola or Klopp,those coaches have been coaching their teams for years. Ok let me leave this.

      When he says our strength is wing play,I know he is talking about how he wants this team to play,if not the Nigerian way is not necessarily rushing the ball to the wings,no way! Yes we play with great,wingers- Odegbami,Finish Amunike, but it was never about finding the wingers or we die,we had a beautiful confident midfield play,that can make us comfortably pierce the opposition through the middle also.

      So the true Nigerian fotball is a combo of wing play and midfield dexterity.

      Anyways Rohr drifted greatly from this Nigerian system, with real stubbornness. So if Eguavoen relies heavily on wing play in this time that is too short to prepare,I don’t blame him.

      We are blessed with exceptional wingers. Not that we don’t have great midfielders, but it has never been a strong point of Rohr’s Eagles, never! So if Eguavoen reasons that, “ol boy, the wing has been our strength recently, so let me concentrate more there”, I won’t blame him o. Did you hear what Ahmed Musa said about people thinking much about Salah? He said Nigeria has Chukwueze too and others for Egypt to worry about. Why did he mention Chukwueze? Without even planning it, he is revealing to us that wing play is the theme of this team.

      Have we noticed that the wingers are thesame ones we’ve been using for many months? In midfield and attack there are new faces, but not wingers. Once again I don’t blame the coach. There is no time to adequately prepare,so he has chosen a short-cut which is trusted. Then in using that short-cut,he wants to enhance it, by increasing the pace of ball distribution, especially since all our wingers have great pace. To me that’s okay.

      A writer here(@Jide Dola) intelligently wonders what will happen if we meet a team who enjoys pace. Well only few teams in the competition play with real pace I think. Secondly, that they are devoting much to wing play doesn’t now mean that they won’t just know anything else. I believe the coach will know how to tell them to “cool the ball down” as we say in Nigeria m if we meet a team that genuinely enjoys the opponent playing with pace.


      • Great analysis Oge, thanks. And it was nice to read a contribution from you after such a long time.
        Stay blessed.

        • Amazing. Seriously,I’m quite surprised you still remember me o. E don tey.
          Phone wahala and finances kept me away for long.
          Great to reconnect.

          Hearty regards bro.

  • MONKEY POST 3 weeks ago

    Like father like son… Like his fans too Eguavon is busy celebrating the win…oh my World! LMFAO!!!!

    • I was reading beautiful comments and analysis until this one came from nowhere with his rubbish again. Gosh! Some people shouldn’t be commenting on this forum. It’s tiring to read your comment cause all you do is whine like a baby @Monkey Post

      • MONKEY POST 2 weeks ago

        LMAO! @Linkin I will continue to whine like a baby until your master piknic and his gang park their bags out of the glass house… They are killing our football and it’s getting me mad. Don’t you get?

        By the way where is @Ben and @Marvelous.. It’s been long I read from them

  • pompei 3 weeks ago

    The problem of not enough players arriving in the box can be addressed by switching to the 4-1-4-1 system.
    Have Ndidi as the lone DM, and move Aribo up, where he is more productive.
    Utilizing the starting eleven against Coton Sports, the suggested formation would be:
    Aina, Ekong, Omeruo, Sanusi
    Musa, Iheanacho, Aribo, Ejuke
    My preferred starting eleven against Egypt:
    Replace Musa with Chuwkueze.
    Start one of Awoniyi or Sadiq as the lone center forward.
    With this formation, if a cross is coming into the box from the left wing, we should have the following already in the box, or arriving in the box:
    1) The center forward
    2_ The opposite winger, which in this case is Chukwueze
    3) The 2 AMs, in this case Iheanacho and Aribo.
    That’s a minimum of 4 players in and around the box, ready to convert crosses.
    If we’re controlling the game, the formation will be 4-1-4-1.
    If the opponent has control of the game, we switch to 4-5-1.
    Hint – Algeria won the 2019 Afcon playing just like this. It also served them well in the just concluded FIFA Arab Cup. It’s a system that encourages attacking football without sacrificing much defensively.

    • Jide Dola 2 weeks ago

      @pompei bro you are very correct, I have been thinking how we are going to have enough number in the box with that formation. For example Aribo will play almost side by side or abit ahead of ndidi with formal having liberty to go forward more frequently. Then here is the thing. If long pass comes from any of Aribo or ndidi it has left both of them behind. Then the options to join attach will be left or right winger, striker will be there already, no 3 person will be the person that is playing behind the striker that will just be arriving and at some point he may be there already depending on how well he dropped to receive pass before the long pass through the wing. Then due to the kind of fast football he’s trying to play only if the wing back from the other end is fast enough that he can be in the box before the cross. So most time we may end up having the same number of players in the box and around the box at all times which will be 2 or 3 may be 4 at all times. I will also suggest he slows down the pace of his game pattern a bit which may end up wearing out our players. And there are teams that enjoy fast football more than us and is their part and parcel, if we play such game against such opponent it may become a problem, I believe coach knows this one already.

  • There can’t be improvement when you play a lone striker and copy and paste formation from the previous coach whom I don’t understand why he was fired if we are still going to depend on his formation. I’m not against coach Rohar. I supported until the last matches we played. I appreciate him and I think he was close to getting the formation right only if he adapts the 3 4 3 which I hope our present coach adapts if he really wants to score goals and at the same time defend well. This formation brings out the best in the guys and you will see them play the same way they do at their clubs


    Awaziem. William. Omeruo

    Ola. Ndidi. Zaidu

    Iwobi/ Nwakali

    Chukwueze/Peter/Musa. Sadiq/Taiwo/Kelechi. Moses/ Ejuke

    With this formation we have the right and left backs support the three forwards and at the same time forming a five man defense we can use them to build a diamond in the midfield while our attackers put pressure on the opponent’s defense and winning balls, we reserve their energy for scoring not allowing them to go deep in defense. Opponents will either loose balls to our attackers or be forced to clear balls into our diamond midfield when our R and L backs cross the balls we will out number our opponents defense and we are all over the box and around.goals will come.

  • Diran 3 weeks ago

    Pompei you are very correct. Thanks for your brilliant analyses and input. I only hope coaches Eguavoen and Salisu Yusuf are taken note and reading this.

  • @pompei nice observation there, good analysis….. my take is if Eguavouen can follow the latest football tactics he will succeed with this team he should not make the same mistakes he did when he took super eagles to afcon my fear is he just have short period of time to make the team play well my advice to him is to study some great teams in the world the likes of three lions, Man city this team played tactical football the way @pompei said it those two formations are really effective

  • MuYiwa 3 weeks ago

    @Bright, Did I hear u say latest football tactics? When Chief Sege wants us to use 1980 tactics. LOL. It is well. Meanwhile why is no one talking about Ebuehi and why is Jamilu Collins still not in camp. I suspect that guy is injured but those in the glass house want him to be at the AFCON at all costs.

    • Greenturf 2 weeks ago

      Probably he’s trying down a contract with a new club.I doubt he’s injured.

      • Dr. Drey 2 weeks ago

        Contract with a new club since 23rd of December….??? I will be shocked if it is so. There would have been no better and easier way to earn a good contract than appearing early in camp to tie down that no 3 slot for the 2nd consecutive AFCON. It would be club agents running after you instead. There’s something the NFF and Eguavoen are not telling us about Collins and their reluctance to call up the right players (especially the foreign borns). Imagine it was Silas Nwankwo being lined up to replace Ighalo….Really..? Seriously…?

    • Dr. Drey 2 weeks ago

      Hehehehe….a recuperating jamilu collins is far better than a fit Calvin Bassey I guess…..LMAaooo…the same way a recuperating ndah was a better choice than a fit as fiddle Akpoguma. Welcome to the era of “your owns” who have not been watching Dessers and Amoo closely but have been going to the stadium watching Nwakali week in week out

  • Dr. Drey 2 weeks ago

    Modern football has taught us that the farther you are from goal, the lesser your goal threat, hence the reason why tactics that deploy wingers that run the byline have become outdated.

    I was just laughing when I watched that youtube video where Eguavoen was playing table soccer demonstrating to us how a flat 4-4-2 works….LMAoooo. In 2022….??? You would get killed….LMAOooo.

    I repeat, in the year 2022, you will get killed deploying 2 wingers on the byline. That’s effectively minus 2 bodies in the box and minus 2 goal threats for you.

    Deploy inverted wingers and let them play narrow – between the D of the center circle and the D of the 18 yard box and let your full backs be the ones to run the channels and drill crosses into the box. That way you can even have the luxury of as much as 5 players in the box if you have the sort of box-to-box midfielder who arrives late into the box. Otherwise play 3 forwards (1 CF and 2 WFs) and 2 advanced midfielders with very hardworking anchorman or regista behind them and overlapping fullbacks to work the bylines.

    But the more attacking players you deploy as out and out wingers, the less bodies you will find in the box.

    With these sort of wingers we have in the SE nowadays who can hardly float an accurate cross to the head of a traditional no 9 to save their own lives, you want to be playing that outdated 1994 (almost 30 years ago) flat 4-4-2 with out and out wingers on the bylines…???

    Ok o. Na sidon look we dey…LMAOoo

    • Another name I remember some time back. Goodmorning sir. U still dey d matter.

      I like your impressive take on this issue. Indeed this is how football works today. You are very correct.

      Yet won’t we accept that the teams that exemplify this modern football trend properly plan for it? Let’s be more practical here not utopian. When was Eguavoen employed, is that proper planning? He is a caretaker coach even.

      The man has therefore decided what is easier for him to teach,in this very short time he has. If it was an England,France,Germany et al,that employed a caretaker coach this close the Euros, their people won’t be expecting much from their team. The white man can be very realistic with things.

      If you say,Eguavoen is not being smart, that actually he knows nothing else in his brain tactically except the 4-4-2 thing, then the blame should go to Mr Amaju.

      For me, my first post here(in reply to deo) elaborates on my position in this matter,I don Eguavoen the benefit of the doubt.

      Cheers man

      • Dr. Drey 2 weeks ago

        Good day to you too my brother.

        If 4-4-2 is the only thing in Eguavoen’s brain as you opined above, then let him stick to it (with its limitations) and stop complaining.

        And please we dont want to know when Eguavoen was appointed. We have heard severally on this platform how any coach does not need more than 2 weeks with this current set of players, the best in Afrcia, to win this AFCON. We’ve heard how it was the players individual brilliance that carried the SE all through the 5 years Rohr was in charge and not his tactical input. We’ve heard severally on this forum how Tuchel and Dimatteo turned Chelsea around within “weeks”. So please, save us this “when was Eguavoen appointed” news…LMAOooo. Nobody put a gun to the head of the NFF to sack a coach 3 weeks to a tournament and replace him with another.

        As a matter of fact, only Rohr is missing from the current technical team. Salisu has been the assistant coach, Yobo has also been an assistant coach, Agu is still GK coach, Eguavoen has been TD and Aigbogun has been Deputy TD and an un-official Asst SE coach doing all the opposition scouting and homebased coaching all along. We still have virtually the same set of players, So this excuse of when was Eguavoen appointed is not just tenable. So much so that even all our exinternationals are so confident and have told us we will go all the way to lift this trophy. So whats all these complaints and excuses…?

        So we arent really comfortable with all the excuses. The disaster the NFF wants to avert must be averted. That’s all we care about.

        • Thanks for your feedback.
          The coach ain’t complaining. When he says we wants to go with wingplay did you call it a complain? So the man is in discussion mode and he wants more bodies in the box and he knows he can achieve that with the players he has. It may not be as much as it would have been with the inverted wingers thing, but he knows he can get more presence in the box and yes he can. One thing that would work for him is that not many teams in the AFCON plays the modern game. How many teams even have a modern coach. Please let’s face reality here @Doc

          • So we see that he was true to his wing play and he got a result.

            Frrrreshhh air

        • If you have allowed whatever you have heard to be your standard,it is not my fault o.

          I stay with football standards– it takes time to build a team normally. That’s why the countries I mentioned above will be realistic if they had a coach appointed this close to the Euros. You avoided commenting on that.

          On Rohr let him go and rest somewhere please. We needed fresh air. Please check what I said on him above(in my reply to @deo).

          I don’t work with assumptions,you have no inside knowledge on how the previous crew worked day to day, so no one should tell me it is only a slight change because the personnel didn’t change much.

          A new coach is in charge and that makes a whole world of difference. He has chosen a style to implement and I have given him the benefit of the doubt.

          • Dr. Drey 2 weeks ago

            Congratulations sir. On the one hand, you wanted fresh air, on the other hand you complain the time the fresh air was given to you was too short. We were that good and confident in our team that demanding the trophy was not out of place, but now we cant even dare to even dream.

            The countries you mentioned up there will just not take silly decisions weeks before the Euros, for the same reasons history has taught us which some of us re-echoed on this platform, but which the powers that be ignored.

            So please do enjoy your “fresh air”. But stop complaining about it or giving us excuses on why we shouldn’t expect it to be fresh enough or fresher than the air we were breathing before.

            I want to believe nobody was drunk when all these decisions were been made. You cannot eat your cake and still have it.

            All we care about is that the hitherto impending disaster which was being averted should and must be averted. Finis and Klaar…!

        • On your last comment. Shuo why not,the fresh air I will continue to enjoy na,it goes without saying.

          It’s just like when Arsenal folks were shouting and protesting that Wenger has overstayed, the club refused to listen. Well finally the supporters got their wish,but by this time Wenger had damaged things.
          Is that the fault of supporters? Ofcourse not!

          So if a Chelsea or Tottenham fan scoffs and says,”hey, shebi you people say Wenger should go,oya enjoy the exit”. You will agree with me that that Chelsea fan is making no real sense. Infact that fan is talking as a fan(fanatic)

  • @pompei your analysis are always spot on keep it up sir,nice information….

  • Mutum 2 weeks ago

    @pompie! Oil dey ur head