Sylvanus Okpala Backs Peseiro, offers Advice on Ahmed Musa’s Super Eagles Role


Super Eagles head Coach, Jose Peseiro’s 23-man list for the Africa Cup of Nations qualifiers caused a stir, and has prompted scrutiny, such that the Portuguese might want to avoid, but the Coach should stand by his decision, says former coach Sylvanus Okpala.

Okpala, who was assistant Coach of the Super Eagles in 2013, refused to tow the line of dissenters who have rejected the list outright for its lack of merit, largely.

“I think it is based on the discretion of the coach to choose whoever he wants to play, and based on the pattern or strategy or formation he wants to play.

“So, I don’t have to question his selection because he is the coach, he knows what value each Player brings to the team.

“The responsibility is his if the team fails or otherwise, so it is at his own discretion,” he told FL.

“I don’t question his invitation to any of the players, whether home-based or foreign-based or whichever league he is playing, because it is at his own discretion and we have to respect his decision. We can only question his decision when things are not going well, but he does not fall short of individuals at least.”

Sylvanus Okpala also advised that the captain of the team, be given a role outside of playing capacity.

Okpala believes the Winger is in his twilight and in the team his role should change.

“I saw Ahmed Musa’s name on the list and that is good. In the National teams, You can have the main coach and several assistants. If you ask me, I will suggest that they include Musa in the team of assistant coaches to be assisting, and then you can as well from there help the boys, Because, in football, nobody is indispensable, but people have their time,” the former Super Eagles assistant Coach said.

“Ahmed Musa, very nice guy, I was with him in 2012 when we came in with Stephen Keshi, very disciplined and quiet.

“In the one year and 3 or 4 months we were together, I never saw him quarrel with anybody, I have never seen him exchange words with anybody.

“He is a cool guy, disciplined and quiet, but I think they should bring him in the Coaching role and build him up, he will serve as a mediator between the coaches and the players.”


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