A Critical review of the findings of a research done by Sports Intelligence (Special Prints) edition published in May/June 2012, Vol.1 No.2
PURPOSE FOR REVIEW IN 2019
The review of this publication becomes necessary after the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) decided to send Super Eagles Manager Gernot Rohr, on Refreshers Course abroad. Gernot Rohr failed to take the Super Eagles beyond the Group stage of the Russia 2018 World Cup and guided Nigeria to the semifinal of the African Cup of Nations in Egypt 2019 where the team eventually won bronze.
FINDINGS OF THE PUBLICATION IN 2012
The publication which sought to investigate if Nigeria needed foreign coaches or not in the future made the following findings.
- Nigerian sports administrators find it difficult to sack foreign managers and celebrate the sack of an indigenous manager even when there was no need for that.
- Nigerian fans find it difficult to see the tactical faults of foreign managers. They apportion blames to the players when the team under performs under a foreign manager but call for the heads of indigenous managers when the team fail to play as expected.
- Our Sports administrators find it very difficult to owe foreign coaches, and in most cases they pay them upfront despite the huge salary which they earn. However, all of our indigenous coaches have at one time or the other operated when they were owed arrears.
- NFF is the course of the poor performance of Nigerian Coaches-S.I Survey
- Since the evolution of Nigerian football in 1922 till the time of the study in 2012, all the 14 indigenous coaches who had handled Nigeria football team were sacked, while the 19 foreign managers had only one sacked and another sidelined. The remaining 17 managers all left voluntarily.
SUMMARY: The findings of the investigation in 2012 is not far from what is actually happening in the decision of the Nigeria Football Federation Today in 2019 about how football is managed. More so, Nigerian fans find it difficult to see or speak about the tactical deficiency in Gernot Rohr’s team. For a coach that has been in charge from August 2016 till date and have failed to take the team beyond the group stage of the World Cup in Russia 2018, he has no excuse.
WHOSE VIEWS WERE SOUGHT IN THAT PUBLICATION OF 2012 EDITION THAT IS BEEN REVIEWED ?
Four Coaches were interviewed in the course of that research. A Foreign Coach based in Nigeria, and three other indigenous coaches who were as at 2012 in charge of various sports. While two were in charge of football, the remaining two were in charge of Table Tennis and Boxing respectively. For the sake of clarity let us introduce the coaches.
- PAUL ASHWORTH (FOOTBALL): AS at time of the investigation, Paul Ashworth an English Coach was the Technical Director of the Kwara Football Academy. He guided the team to success in the NNPC/Shell Cup 2012 Football Competition.
- TUNDE DISU (FOOTBALL): As at time of this investigation, Tunde Disu (OFR) was the Technical Director of the Lagos Junior League and a former Technical Director of the Then Green Eagles (Now Super Eagles). He will be remembered for his role in Saudi 1989.
- JERRY OKORODUDU: (BOXING): As at time of the investigation then, Jerry Okorodudu was the Head Coach of the Nigerian Boxing National team who represented Nigeria in several international competitions such as the Olympics and the Commonwealth Games.
- OLASUNBO SALIU: (TABLE TENNIS): As at time of this investigation then, Olasunbo Saliu Popularly known as “Coach Malawi”, was the Head Coach of the Lagos State Table Tennis Association. He also represented Lagos State during his hey days as a player.
WHAT DID THEY SAY IN THAT PUBLICATION (QUOTABLE QUOTES)
“The Coaches Do Not Have Any Problem whether foreign or indigenous;the problem with development of Nigerian Football is with the administrators”. “When the administrators employ European Coaches, they treat them better than Nigerian Coaches, and this is Bad. A Coach is a coach it does not matter if he is Nigerian or a Foreign Coach”.-PAUL ASHWORTH -“Do we Need Foreign Coaches? Page 20, Sports Intelligence Magazine May/June 2012
“There is Nothing Wrong with the NFF Hiring a foreign Technical Director. I was the first technical director of the Nigeria Football Association from 1993 to 1998. The Relationship of the Coach and the technical director should bother themselves on how to get result. When I worked with Bonfere and Westerhof we did not have issues”.-TUNDE DISU,-Do We Need Foreign Coaches? Page 30, Sports Intelligence Magazine May/June 2012
“We Need Foreign Coaches To Help Us See The inefficiency in our indigenous Sports Administrators. If we Employ a foreign Coach and he demands for Ten Naira to do a job, they (Administrators)will make it available but when you give the same job to an indigenous coach and he demands for for the sum of Five Naira to do same job, you will be surprised they will say there is no money”–JERRY OKORODUDU, Do We Need Foreign Coaches? Page 25, Sports Intelligence Magazine
“When we were still playing then, Indigenous Coaches are made to travel to China, Japan and other countries for re-training and refreshers courses. But now, if you make such proposals to the Federal Government they will simply tell you that there is no money”.-OLASUNBO SALIU, Do We Need Foreign Coaches? Page 32, Sports Intelligence Magazine
SUMMARY: The views of the experts sought in 2012 is not different from what is obtainable in Nigeria Football Federation today. No indigenous Coach has been deemed fit to be sent on refreshers course since then. But NFF expects Rhor deserve same. Even the Late Stephen Okechuckuw Keshi who won our AFCON in 2013 and took us to the round of 16 in 2014 did not get such support.