Eagles Pound NYSC 5-2, Amokachi Unimpressed
Expectedly, Super Eagles first warm up game since the team opened camping December 30th last year ended in victory for the national side against the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC), by 5-with the FCT State League side showing a lot of grit and fluency against the Eagles.
The NYSC side actually drew the first blood in only the second minute of the match when number 10 shirted Nwowu Ikenna, sleek dribbles in the Eagles vital area ended on the legs of teammate, Omefe Ifeanyi, who did a ‘thank you very much’, by slotting home from close range.
The goal jolted the national team to reality and four minutes later hotshot, Mfom Udoh equalized after Gambo Mohammed’s beautiful run from the right fell to him. But the NYSC team will not let go, as they again took the lead through Eugene Utom in the 6thminute after another defensive mix-up that forced Coach Dan Amokachi to pull out experienced defender, Azubuike Egwuekwe, who was apparently the culprit of the gaps noticed in the backline
The Super Eagles seem to wake up after that change with Nelson Ogbonna curtailing the excesses of the NYSC strikers, while teen sensation, Kingsley Sokari alias Bobby equalized in the 18thminute with a neatly struck goal. Sokari added his second of the day in the 21st minute after a neat interchange of passes with inform Heartland of Owerri winger, Stanley Dimgba.
Two minutes to the end of the first half, Mfom Udoh got also his second of the morning, after Gambo had done the hard part of the job. The first half thus ended 4-2.
In the second half, Amokachi introduced Bright Esieme, Christian Obiozor, Emem Eduok, Gbolahan Salami and goalkeeper Chigozie Agbim, who took over from Daniel Akpeyi. They pressed for more goals but were a bit wasteful in front of goal. But Eduok will not allow the half to be dry as one his fine runs which caused trouble for the NYSC side was finally converted by Christian Osas Ighodalo, for the fifth and last goal of the match. This was in the 85th minute.
Speaking after the match, Amokachi, said he was not impressed by the performance of his wards as they showed signs of heaviness, adding that more work needed to be done before the team travels out later this week. “If you concede such an early goal against an experienced side like Cote D’ Ivoire you will be in trouble because you will have to chase the game all day”, he said.
On his part, NYSC gaffer, Rotimi Salau, said one match was not enough to judge the national team but noted that the team needed to improve on its tactical and technical abilities. He however said with the quality of players he saw in the game, the current home based national side has a bright future.