Ireland are out of the world cup after losing 2:1 to Canada today.
For me, this is the worst possible outcome.
I had hoped for an Ireland upset at best or score draw at worst.
Football Universe has a way of achieving equilibrium. Canada and Australia are naturally expected to make it out of this group and this result has just helped swing the pendulum in that direction.
We now need to win Australia (a tall ask despite the braggadocios statements in some quarters) or at least secure a draw which still leaves much work to do against Ireland.
Ireland will want to go out with a bang so that their adoring fans can have something to cheer about. So the Super Falcons can expect war despite the fact that Ireland have crashed out.
I don’t mean to sound gloomy. Rather just to say that the margins for error have become narrower and the game against Australia is now do or die.
Individually, our girls more than match Australia. As a unit, it’s a totally different story. The Australians are simply more dynamic with the ball and employ more Avant Garde methods of football in their movements and incursions into enemy territory.
Nigeria’s brand of play is traditional, old fashioned and conversational. It is not intricate, complex or overly imaginative.
It just relies on doing the rudiments right on the ball – pass, move, position and strike. Its strength is cast iron organisation when without the ball and a form of compactness with it . In possession, our attacking routine is practical and functional. It doesn’t particularly make us inferior to Australia or any other team if we remain businesslike and competent in the execution of our routines.
It just means Nigeria has less tricks up our sleeves compared to say Spain or England. But if we play as a team and execute our maneuvers with focus and concentration, we can do a lot of harm before returning to our shell when out of possession.
The key is teamwork.
Good luck to Nigeria. It only gets harder from here