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After Loss To Gambia, Should Bosso Lead The Flying Eagles To The World Cup?


Well, regardless of how fans may feel about Bosso's coaching credentials, the manner of his team's loss to Gambia in the U-20 Afcon semi-final was cruel, to be honest.


Two freakish events, one in the dawn and the other in the denouement of the match sealed the Flying Eagles' fate. 


An unfortunate ricochet fell kindly to the Gambian striker who feasted on the chance to make it 1:0 for his team with the match just 7 minutes old. With just 4 minutes of the game left, Nigeria won a penalty but blew the chance to pull level as Abdullahi crashed the bar.


1:0 it ended, Bosso has failed once again to win the Under-20 Afcon as his team will now settle for a third place playoff; exactly the same thing that happened when he coached the Flying Eagles to the 2009 U-20 Afcon.


"We failed to take our chances and we also missed the penalty in the 86th minute.

I am very frustrated. Football is cruel." Said Bosso. 


For me too, the manner of the goal Nigeria conceded and the missed penalty were truly frustrating. But, I never saw this team as a tournament winning squad. Their brand of football is not refined and even the Route One football they practice could not bail them out against Gambia last night when the chips were down. 


Bosso was sacked by the NFF in 2009 when the team was defeated in the semi finals of the U-20 Afcon. With just over 2 months to the world cup, I will strongly advise against sacking Bosso this time around. 


His Flying Eagles team to this tournament played with heart, dedication, determination and patriotism. But they just couldn't give what they didn't have : class and quality. 


I said it before, Route One football can be effective. Even last night, long balls from deep and cross field high balls created problems that visibly rattled the Gambians in the first half. 


One such scenario saw the Gambian goalkeeper caught in no-man's land close to the center circle with the resultant long range shot from the Nigerian striker sailing just wide, narrowly missing a Gambian defender's hand inside the 18 yard box. 


But, Bosso's boys lacked the gumption, movement, guile, imagination and killer instinct to take advantage of the opportunities inherent in long balls and Route One strategy.


 After the Gambians mounted an effective response for Bosso’s Route One - Long Balls strategy in the second half, Bosso was slow to introduce a Plan B and when he did, his Plan B (to play on the ground, penetrate through midfield with through balls) was half-arsed, ineffective and poorly executed (because the players on the field lacked the requisite football acumen). 


Well, Bosso should go and dine with Coach Sam Allardyce or Tony Pulis so they can teach him the rudiments of Route One football. 


He needs to fortify his midfield with intelligent players. His defense his good enough but lack a bit of organization which led to the goals from Senegal and Gambia. 


His wingers are passable but he needs high caliber center forwards. Bosso's players are hard working, which is good to see. 


But without quality in key areas, all their hard work will also account for absolutely nothing at the World Cup in about 2 months time. 


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