Chief Adegboye Onigbinde has advised Gernot Rohr to build the Nigeria senior national team around local based professionals if he must qualify the country for the Fifa World Cup.
The Super Eagles begin their quest to reach Russia 2018 with an away tie versus Zambia on October 8, and the Caf instructor thinks coach Rohr would get it right if foreign stars don’t dominate his team.
“It takes a team to blend into a team,” Onigbinde said.
“When I led the Super Eagles to the 2002 World Cup, it took me less than three months to build the team. If not for some saboteurs that had negative impact on the team, my side could have made a big impact in South Korea and Japan.
“Raising a national team should not be as tedious as it is if we have a national approach to football tactics and techniques. For example, if you bring a player from Manchester United and you bring another one from Chelsea, it is clear that they play different football technically and how do you expect them to blend into a team with two days to an important game.
“What we need in football is not a group of stars but a team of players. The individual skills matter but what you need in football is a team and not a group of players.”
“This is what I have been saying as regards the development of our own football. It should be based on our natural endowment,” he added.
“For example, those in the south western and eastern part of the country have muscles, while those in the north have stamina. So why can’t we build our system around this and utilize it to excel in football. In East Africa, if you are leading their national teams during a game don’t go to sleep because eventually they will use their stamina to outwit your team.
“If our national team wants to be successful, it should be built round home based professionals and invite few foreign based players to fortify the side.
“But the reverse is the case as foreign based players form the fulcrum and this makes blending and other tactical discipline very difficult to carry out sometimes,” he concluded.