Former Super Eagles star, Etim Esin, says Odion Ighalo should continue to enjoy his retirement instead of contemplating coming back to the national team. Excerpt…
There was a scare about the health condition of Super Eagles striker, Victor Osimhen, what do you think should be done for him to be back to his normal self?
He should be given a little time off the pitch for now; thank God he is okay now, it could have been worse.
We had players like Sam Okwaraji in the past, Vivian Foe of Cameroon and some others who just slumped like that and didn’t come out alive.
He should be allowed to recuperate and get his confidence back because when you experience such a situation, you have to really gain back your confidence. At the moment he will be panicked.
What could you say about his performance recently for both club and country?
He is a good potential for the country. He has the talent and if he can keep such consistency, he has a great future ahead of him.
He can put his footprints on the sands of time like strikers such as Rashidi Yekini, Yakubu Aiyegbeni, Odion Ighalo and the rest like had done during their time.
It just comes down to consistency and if he continues to do like that, especially with his potential, definitely, a big club in Premiership or LaLiga will look his way and sign him. He is doing very well at the moment and I am happy for him.
The U-20 too has been good for us in the past. A lot should now be focused on youth development ahead of the New Year. We cannot get any result if we are not putting in the efforts in the grassroots
Retired Super Eagles striker, Odion Ighalo, is currently contemplating his return to the team, with the form of players like Osimhen, Joe Aribo and the rest; do you think we need Ighalo back?
We have seen players already retired returning to the national team if needed. Therefore, I will say if there is need for him, they can allow him.
You never can tell, injury can happen, something we are not praying for, and there will be need for a striker.
However, he has done well for Nigeria, he already called it a day, let him just go and concentrate on his club career and allow the younger ones to move ahead with their career.
Can you analyse football in the outgoing year?
We really need to revive our grassroots.
In the past we used to perform well in age grade championships like the U-17, U-20 and the Olympics. We have won both the U-17 several times while we also won the Olympic once.
The U-20 too has been good for us in the past. A lot should now be focused on youth development ahead of the New Year. We cannot get any result if we are not putting in the efforts in the grassroots.
The Nigeria Football Federation said the country would be pulling out of Beach Soccer tournaments, do you see this as a good decision?
Just because we didn’t do well the last time doesn’t mean we should pull out. Nigeria pulling out doesn’t make sense to me.
The most important thing is to source for sponsors and get the best atmosphere for the players to excel because Beach Soccer is a global event and need all encouragement at the moment.