Former Nigeria defender, Taribo West, has said Super Eagles coach Sunday Oliseh must learn from the team’s mistakes against Tanzania in their 2017 Africa Cup of Nations qualifier in Dar es Salaam on Saturday.
Taribo said the South Africa 2013 Africa Cup of Nations champions, who defeated Niger 2-0 in a friendly affair in Port Harcourt on Tuesday, were lucky to escape with a goalless draw against Tanzania.
The Eagles picked up a point in the encounter to sit on the second spot in Group G on four points, two points behind leaders, the Pharaohs of Egypt, who won 5-1 in N’Djamena against Chad.
The Eagles had goalkeeper Carl Ikeme, who was making his Nigeria debut on the day, to thank for his amazing saves, which denied the East Africans a win at the National Stadium in Dar es Salaam.
Taribo lamented the poor showing of the Eagles in the 0-0 draw, saying the Taifa Stars should have won but for their inexperience in front of goal and England-based keeper Ikeme’s heroics.
The 1996 Olympic Games gold medallist told our correspondent on the telephone on Tuesday, “We didn’t play and we were lucky the Tanzanians are inexperienced. I haven’t seen the national team play so slowly the way they did the other day. If they have to qualify from the group, they have to work harder.
“There were two free-kicks that should have gone in but for Ikeme. In subsequent games, we must not make such mistakes or else we will be battered.
“Except for Ikeme who was outstanding, and the defenders, who did well, I didn’t see anything in the middle and in the attack. The only thing Eagles had was physical presence. (Haruna) Lukman was not in the game and only Emmanuel Emenike tried to muscle his way through.”
The ex-AC Milan centre-back admitted that coach Sunday Oliseh needed some time to build a better team and urged fans to be patient with him.
“We don’t have the kind of national team that we crave for yet but we have to give Oliseh a chance. This is just his first game in charge; there is room for him to improve. I believe he can turn the fortunes of the team around,” the ex-footballer-turned pastor added.