Eagles need to rebuild confidence to triumph – Siasia


By Peter Akinbo

Former Super Eagles striker and coach, Samson Siasia, has said the three-time African champions need to build their confidence back to get a chance at winning the Africa Cup of Nations in Ivory Coast, PUNCH Sports Extra reports.

Siasia commended the current squad for its individual talents but stressed that team confidence was key to a fourth continental success in Ivory Coast.

“The team has good players, but they have to play as a team. If they start playing as a team, then we might have a chance to do whatever, but time is not our friend. The time is short.

“If they can up their game, we never know. But we’ve got to get the right players. And let’s see. We’re not going to say they can win it or not. They can win it all. But let’s see how they improve from now on, moving forward.

“That will give us the kind of idea if they can win it. It depends on how they play in the next game. But now they are there. Everybody (other teams) is afraid. But they need to build their confidence back,” he said.

Siasia drew parallels with the famed Super Eagles team of the ’90s, which he was a part of, noting the importance of time and continuity in building a formidable squad.

“The team that won the AFCON in 1994 actually played in the 1992 Nations Cup. We were there since the 80s and it took us almost a year to put up a team like that, that can compete.

“I mean, we won the Nations Cup and we can compete like that in the world. So, it took some time, years, to put up that team; a team that was very strong and won the Nations Cup,” he said.

“We need time to build a team. And we don’t have that time because time is gone. In another 10 years’ time, we should be looking at trying to win the World Cup, not just the Africa Nations Cup. So, we have to start building now.”

He highlighted the need for confidence and opportunities for players like spain-based striker Umar Sadiq, who he believes can make a significant impact on the team.

“Sadiq is very good. They need to give him a chance and give him the kind of confidence he needs. Then he’s going to (spring a) surprise. We see him playing in his club and he’s doing very well. He can actually do the same thing here (with the Eagles),” Siasia said.