In spite of Super Eagles’ 3-2 loss to Atletico Madrid of Spain on Tuesday, the team portends bright future for Nigeria, says Mutiu Adepoju, an ex-Super Eagles and La Liga midfielder.
Adepoju made the assertion on Thursday while reflecting on the international friendly match, tagged GOtv MAX Cup organised by MultiChoice for the teams in Uyo, Akwa Ibom.
The News Agency of Nigeria reports that the visitors claimed the maiden GOtv MAX Cup at the Nest of Champions Stadium to cap a befitting season.
Adepoju played most of his career in Spain, amassing La Liga totals of 175 games and 22 goals over the course of seven seasons and mainly representing Racing de Santander and Real Sociedad.
A Nigerian international for 12 years, Adepoju appeared for the country in three World Cups and as many Africa Cup of Nations.
Adepoju said that the Super Eagles Team B, comprising maily of home-based players displayed good mastery of the game against the current UEFA Europa Cup champions, to the admiration of home spectators.
He said: “It is not the victory or result that justifies the end at all times, the outcome of the friendly match between Nigeria is a typical example of such notion.
“In spite of the fact that the Eagles lost 2-3 to the visitors, it was still a good match for Nigeria, considering certain factors.
“The Eagles confronted the UEFA champions with their Team B and still managed to lose by a goal difference which shows a very good fight from the home-based team.
“That really shows that the future is bright for the nation if the team can build on the current form.
“It is an indicator that these players are future world stars by the time they will graduate to the main team.’’
On what could have accounted for a narrow victory for Madrid, Adepoju, also known as “Headmaster’’ because of his head scoring skills absolved the UEFA champions of poor performance.
He said: “Madrid actually maintained their unbeatable run playing another La Liga club (Eiber) on Sunday, then embarked on a journey for international friendly on Monday.
“Considering the travel stress and the previous match, one will be left with no doubt to applaud the Spanish club for snatching a victory in their opponents’ home.’’
Adepoju commended Gernot Rohr for making impressive selection of Super Eagles players, urging him to build up with DR Congo match and others ahead of the Russia 2018 World Cup.
NAN reports that Adepoju, a former Shooting Stars and Julius Berger top player, currently promotes La Liga (Spanish League) in Nigeria and beyond for mutual development of football.
NAN also reports that Torres scored brace when Madrid played 2-2 draw against Eiber on Sunday.
Diego Simeone, Madrid’s coach commended the Eagles line up for playing a good match against his formidable team.
Kelechi Nwakali opened scoring for the Eagles in the 32nd minute, while Angel Correa scored the equalizer for Madrid in the 33rd minute.
Fernando Torres scored the second goal against the Eagles, while Usman Mohammed levelled up for Nigeria before Borja Garciers scored the winner the 85th minute.