Former Super Eagles midfielder, Etim Esin, has said that the CHAN Eagles lack standing players that can turn around the phase of a game when the need arises in a match situation.
Speaking with The Guardian yesterday, in the wake of CHAN Eagles embarrassing 0-0 score line against Rwanda, in their opening game at the on-going Africa Nations Championship in Morocco, Esin stated he was disappointed over the lackluster performance of the team, particularly the strikers.
He noted that the players needed to raise the standard of their game in the second match against Libya on Friday to avoid early exit from the championship.
Esin, however, called on football-loving Nigerians not to write off the CHAN Eagles yet, saying that the team still had the chance to excel in the Africa tourney, just as he challenged the players and their handlers to work hard to win their next game as it will go along way in instilling more confidence on the players.
“CHAN Eagles lack creative players that can stand out in a game. This championship is a developmental tournament, which is a platform for the domestic players to prove themselves. In the game against Rwanda, there was no spark of individual brilliance from our players. The strikers were not on top of their game. But at this point in time, people should not write off the team yet. I think they will improve in their next game. The coaches would have given enough pep-talk to the players, “ he said.
The former Super Eagles midfielder also rubbished the views of some Nigerians who said that the performance of the CHAN Eagles in their opening game on Monday is a reflection of lack of quality players in the domestic league.
He reasoned that if the NFF have a standard and organised scouting department to monitor players, the Eagles’ coaches would have gotten better players that would have made a remarkable difference in Morocco.
“It is not fair to say the level of performance of the CHAN players is a reflection of the Nigerian. The players in Morocco are not the best legs in the league. The coaches are left to use the players of their choice because the NFF do not have an organised scouting department that have a pool of quality players the coaches to select from. Over the years, the league had produced players that have travelled abroad to collect shirt from big players in their clubs, “ he said.