To buttress this point, the utterances of both the Nigerian players and South African players in that year competition are aptly illustrative of their respective attitude. One of the Super Falcons players was then quoted on a radio interview to have said “South Africans are our wives, we will always beat them!”
Nonetheless, I had ended that my 2012 piece on a positive note by pointing the way out, I had stated “But there is still hope to return to the top, the performance of the younger generations of footballers, the U-17 team national team tagged Flamingoes and the U-20 team, Falconets, at recent global championship have been inspiring. The Falconets reached (at least) the semi-finals of the last two U-20 World Cups while Flamingoes reached the quarter finals of the last two U-17 World Cups.
“This, fortunately, offers the hope that if we harness the potentials of the young footballers and put in place efficient soccer management which has been our bane, we will not only return to the zenith of African women football, we would also belong to the elite category at the global stage.”
With the latest Super Falcons remarkable victory in Namibia, my prediction has somewhat turned out to be a prophesy! The likes of Asisat Oshoala, who emerged the most valuable player of the tournament; Desire Oparanozie who emerged top scorer and the others like Ngozi Okobi and, Halimatu Ayinde and Fransicsa Ordega, were part of the younger generation from age-grade category who pooled their talents to restore Falcons to the apogee of women soccer.
Be that as it may. Today, we are no longer weeping for Super Falcons, they are our heroines! We are rejoicing with them for the superlative performance and indelible contributions to the cause of fatherland. However and rather unfortunately, the cause of lamentation has not disappeared, it has only shifted. The cause for weeping is now the Nigerian football itself. The source of worry and sadness is the management of Nigerian football.
For the past few months the World soccer governing body, FIFA, has banned and unbanned Nigeria in an unending sequence as Nigeria continues to engage seemingly in game of hide and seek. The source of conflict is what the football ruling body tagged undue political interference in the running of soccer in Nigeria.
What this means is that Super Eagles would not be able to go and defend their crown in Morocco at next year at the African Cup of Nations; the Flying Eagles who have the brightest chance to win the next year African Youth Championship in Senegal (being the team that won the 2013 U-17 FIFA World Cup), would not be there to compete, likewise the Golden Eaglets will not be in Niger next year, and neither of these teams will be in Chile and New Zealand for the U-17 and U-20 World Cup respectively, since the African championships operate as the selection media for the said World Cups.
All the Nigerian clubs would also not be able to compete in any international competitions. All these losses would be incurred simply because those saddled with the administration of the country soccer have not been able to place their house in order.
Post script: FIFA has postponed the judgment day till Friday, October 31, 2014.
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