Falcons depart Canada amid calls for Okon’s removal
AFTER another bad outing in the FIFA World Cup, members of the Super Falcons departed Vancouver yesterday for Nigeria. Some of the players were said to have left for their respective clubs, while the rest of the team will stop over in Paris before heading to Nigeria.
The Falcons, who are seven times African champions, came into the championship with a promise to Nigeria that they would do everything possible to break the 16-year old jinx of not qualifying from the group stage of the World Cup.
It has turned out to be a mere promise, as they suffered two defeats to Australia and USA after playing 3-3 with Sweden in their first group game.
The Lionesses of Cameroun, who are making their debut in the World Cup, are in the round of 16. As the team left Vancouver yesterday, some members pointed accusing fingers at chief coach, Edwin Okon, saying that his technical blunders worked against the team in the World Cup.
“I think the NFF will be doing a great damage to the Falcons, if it allowed Okon to continue as head coach for both the All African Games and Rio 2016 Olympics Games,” one official told The Guardian.
“Okon relied only on Angels in Heaven to do the work. No, we have told him severally that God helps those who help themselves, but he kept preaching God will win the game for us.
I am not saying that one should not have faith in God, but the truth is that a coach has to perform his duty well before God will help you.
Other teams in this competition believe in God as well. “Nigerians are not the only ones, who serve God, so, this idea of preaching that God will win matches for us should be discouraged.
Some of the players have complained that they were played in wrong positions by the coach, which is the simple truth.” Speaking further, the official said: “Even from his selection of players for the World Cup, Okon demonstrated that he was biased and some of us have expressed displeasure over it.
If a player is not playing for his club (Rivers Angels in Port Harcourt), she must come from his state (Akwa Ibom). There is one particular goalkeeper who plays for Sunshine Queens in Akure. She is the best keeper in our local league at the moment, but Okon dropped this girl for reasons best known to him alone.
If we ask questions, he will boast that nobody can do him anything. He relies so much on Emmanuel Ikpeme, who is from his state (Akwa Ibom) and Christopher Green (his oga at Rivers Angels), to always protect him at the NFF. It should not be so.
This idea of leaving our senior national team in the hands of someone coaching a league team in Nigeria is wrong. There is no way he will be fair in his selection of players. Let’s call a spade a spade. I expect madam (Mrs. Dilichukwu Onyedima) to fight it at board level before more harms is done to this team,” the official stated.
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