Godfrey Gaiya, a former Chairman of the House of Representatives’ Committee on Sports, says it is too late for Super Eagles coach Gernot Rohr to be experimenting with players.
Gaiya, who spoke on Wednesday in Abuja on the Super Eagles’ 0-2 loss to Serbia in London on Tuesday, said time was too short for the coach to be doing that.
The News Agency of Nigeria reports that the 0-2 loss was in a friendly match which was part of the team’s preparations ahead of the World Cup scheduled for June.
Gaiya who was obviously not impressed with the team’s selection for the match said the team should retain its earlier squad of players used during the World Cup qualifiers.
He said: “If you are preparing for a tournament like the World Cup, you cannot start experimenting at this stage. I thought by now we should have gotten the basic structure, the basic nucleus for the team.
“These friendlies are supposed to be an avenue to try out patterns and see how prepared we are.
“I was not really happy with the selection yesterday, because there was an attempt to bring in players who have not won any national senior team call-up before.
“I thought we should concentrate on the players we know; the ones used during the qualifiers, and also not use limited international windows to test players.
“The tournament is in just over two months from now. We should be concentrating more on building and not experimenting.’’
Gaiya also advised that Ikechukwu Ezenwa be retained in goal in place of Francis Uzoho.
He said: “Before now the goalkeeping department has been a problem for the team.
“But from his game yesterday, Uzoho still has a long way to go. He is not there yet and at the moment we cannot trust him in goal.
“Though he is a home-based player, Ezenwa should be allowed the opportunity. He has got us this far with his performance in the qualifiers.
“He is not the best, but I think he is someone we can rely on at the moment.’’