Should the Super Eagles adapt a new system going forward in the Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON)? Ademetan Abayomi gives his opinion on the campaign so far.
Coach Gernot Rohr has switched formations and style of play yet some questions still linger with all these positive results.
Can Nigeria afford to keep playing conservative the rest of the way? It helped that Eagles had the advantage of sitting back against a Cameroon side that needed to win in the second round. However, the quarter-final stage is a different creature.
The team recorded back to back 1-0 wins over Burundi and Guinea respectively but crumbled 2-0 to Madagascar in Group B games.
Cameroon though was another story as the Eagles suddenly found themselves trailing 1-2 after some criminal defending at the back. It’s hard to counter attack against a team that now has the lead and plans on sitting back and Nigeria would have to fight their way back and play a different style of football.
Eventually, Nigeria proved that they do have a Plan B and goals from Odion Ighalo and Alex Iwobi sealed the come from behind win. The Cameroon victory was not easy on the eyes.
Eagles will now face South Africa, another team that plays it safe and doesn’t try to get caught with too many players attacking. Thus, whoever scores first will be relying on the other team being a more adventurous for them to set up the counter attacks.
In my opinion, Nigeria needs to develop a style where they can they dictate the tempo and be in control.
Relying on counter attacks is not a fool proof plan. You can’t rely on scoring through long ball home-runs. The last game saw Samuel Chukwueze come off the bench and give the team a boost.
Perhaps Rohr should consider playing the young man from the blast of the whistle as the Eagles begin the second part of their journey in the knock out stage. However, this is Rohr that we are talking about so who knows what he has in store next.