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Mikel: Eagles Have To Improve As Team, Can Still Qualify From Group D

Mikel: Eagles Have To Improve As Team, Can Still Qualify From Group D

By Nnamdi Ezekute in Kaliningrad:
Super Eagles captain, John Mikel Obi says that the team lost to Croatia in their first Group D match at the 2018 FIFA World Cup in Saturday because the team defended too deep to the advantage of the opponents, Completesportsnigeria.com reports.
 Mike however is confident but he  that the team will address the mistake made, improve as team and make progress.
“We have to improve together as a team. Everybody has to improve.
If we didn’t concede the goal through a set-piece we would have been fine. It’s difficult to defend quite deep,” Mikel told journalists after match at the Kaliningrad Stadium.
“If you get the ball you should move closer to the opponents’ goal. It’s something we have to discuss together as a team and see what we can do about it.
“There is no denying the fact that we have to play better. We lost the game today, it has happened. Now we have to do better.
“We appreciate our supporters who travelled the long distance to come here and support the team. We will fight harder in the next to games, and I am optimistic that we  still have chance of qualifying  from the group. But we must double our hard work, this is very important. Our supporters here and back home should keep supporting us.”
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  • Thesame perennial problem of gifting the opponent too much room to operate keeps plaguing the Super Eagles.One could see how the Super Eagles players wouldn’t close down the Crots and giving acres of space for them to easily pick out passes,even in set-pieces.Mario Mandzukic and another Crotian player were left unmarked in the area where the ball was floated to enroute scoring their goal. The only Eagle player shielding the goal from these two was Etebo, and even at this, it wasn’t at close quarters.This gave Mandzukic the priceless gift of that free flying header to force an Etebo own goal.
    It is the more sickening that this problem of gifting the opponents too much room to operate has been well noticed and vaunted, but with nothing
    done to mitigate it. I remember even Messi once pointing it out of the Nigerian team.
    Conversely,the Crots were closely man-marking our players and smothering them of freedom of expression on the field of play.

  • I’m tired of hearing excuses for our lost. Against Iceland you’ll cook another one

  • Amaechi Ajah 3 years ago

    For me ooh, i wasn’t surprised i knew w’l lost. i hv always stress d issue of coaches bin in cntrol of his team yes good one dropping onazi for etebo, bt i tink d nxt game (Iceland) gernot rohr shud b bold enough and ring alot of changes. Am a fan of nt always blivin dat d team dat qualify u 4a tournament ar d best i always see it dat evry member of dat qualifier will feel am indispensable bt wen u bring serious competition in dey wil kw u mean biz. I just pray our coach is tkin note so as 2use as a reference if/wen we pick d afcon 2019 tournament. As 4me against iceland i wil line up ds way (3-4-3); Uzoho- Omeruo, Balogun, Ekong- Ebuehi, Idowu, Ndidi, Ogu- Iwobi, Moses, Iheanacho. Free Iwobi and Moses let dem do der tin from evry edges of d pitch (lk a free role d Hazard, Willian, Neymar, Ozil tinz) while Ndidi & Ogu sit firm at d middle, Idowu & Ebuehi wing backs. As for first 2 subs on he shud tink of Etebo and Musa first b4 any player. How i wish Mr. Rohr tries ds one!

  • Omesiete Blessing 3 years ago

    Uncle Mike, tell us another story.

  • Solape 3 years ago

    They’ve started this arithmetic again!!! 1+1 can still be equal to 2.

  • Chidi 3 years ago

    Abeg skipo park one side u guys failed simple,I hope GR play u as d deep lying playmaker n etebor or iwobi as d play maker ineanacho n Moses at d wings n simmy as our 9 ighalo is not a tornament player,ebuehi  ahead ahead of shehu,

    • How can you play shehu ahead of ebuehi for cry out loud shehu has lost the his form, we don’t need ighalo in that team because his positioning is very bad, just imaging been a striker how many ball did he chased and win back from our opponent,

      I am very sure gr is the wost couch Nigeria has ever had, just imaging how can you play miked behind the striker we all know that Mikel is a good playmaker, we lost to the Croats not becouse they were invisible or unique is just because this pkako onyibo couch played most of our player out of position ,

      j wished he will feature john ogu hammed musa and also benched Mikel in fqvour of iwobi in that no ten position Mikel is good fine but he is weak for the job,

      world cup is not a place to try different formation or player or to try plqyers from there preferable wing else you will rated as the worst team to play in this year tournament,

      If we want to come out with good result gr should patner simmy nwankwo and kelechi iheanacho up front, why is because simmy is very dangerous striker and iheanacho carry luck with him and is aslo dangerous as well,

      and ebuehi should start for us because if his attacking football he play’s he always join the attack and he is in great form currently

  • steven okocha 3 years ago

    when they would be defeated by iceland,they would still be telling us that there is hope of qualification.stupid folks

  • What more can one say that has not been said with respect to the uninspiring performance of the Super Eagles of Nigeria in their opening match against Croatia.
    Though the result was not unexpected given the way we have prosecuted our friendlies yet it does seem we have come to the world cup party with no lessons from those friendly ties.
    The tactical formation of the team coach against such a balanced and well organsised midfield as the Croats leaves alot to be desired, with many fans citing conspiracy by the coach.
    One might well have anticipated a 3-5-2 formation to stack the midfield with the likes of Etebo, Ndidi, Ebuehi and Idowu with Mikel siting the base of the five-man midfiled gang and stifle the rein of free flow football and exchange of passes by the midfield duo of Rakitic and and ageless inspirational skipper, Modric, rather the coach chose to expose the weakness of the team with the adoption of 4-3-3.
    With this formation, we hopelessly watched and endured the agony of seeing some players played out of position, example Alex Iwobi who would provided an attacking flair in the midfield was played out on the flank when it is obvious our prized experienced midfielder was out of his wit and lacking in pace and power to win the midfield challenge and initiative from the Croats.

    Moving away from the Eagles pedestrian displays in their opening game, I should like to see Gernot Rohr revert to the 3-5-2 or 3-5-1-1 tactical formation which accommodates Alex Iwobi in the attacking midfield role with Ndidi providing cover and Mikel sit at the base of the midfield, screening the defence and allowing Iwobi the joy to move the ball freely as we saw him did in the England game.

    It will be amazing to see Ighalo and lanky Simy have a go at the Iceland defence.

  • @mikel, don’t give us fake hope, u are out, beating Argentina was luck, even Portugal and England couldn’t beat Iceland. just come back home, u are too sluggish and don’t have any right to bench Nwakali brothers if not for that German Rohr

  • Nwakali brothers is now the world best Ronaldo or Messi now continue and when he eventually get the chance and he fuck up in one match u will start singing another song. Remember when he wasn’t around everybody was saying Mikel leadership was missing. Also same Mikel played all the qualifier and the friendly match against Argentina and he did well.Stop talking off the mark when things didn’t go our way. The formation was not OK accepted. Do you think Nwakali brothers would have scored 10 goals in that match? mtchhhhew

    • @tayo out of 5 matches, he never play anything, he should have go for defending position which he is currently playing for his club. it is his mouth that play football now and he is making so much noise now as he is old besides the losing chicken makes the most noise