Nigerian supporters at The King Shaka International Airport in
Durban tn Wednesday to welcome the Super Eagles. Photo: NAN
Greece will be key to Eagles’ success
Qualifying from Group B won’t be a
stroll in the park for the
Super Eagles, but former Nigeria internationals Nduka Ugbade and Ben
agree that the Super Eagle’s task of advancing to the knockout rounds of
World Cup will become a lot easier if they achieve a win against the
"The Greek team has always been about
team work and discipline;
that was how they were able to win the European Championships in 2004.
seem to have lost a lot of those qualities and appear ordinary
former Super Eagles defender Nduka Ugbade, who now coaches and is a
"A lot has changed since 2004 and I
think they will be the whipping
boys once again," added Super Eagles left-back to the 1994 World Cup,
Nigeria beat Greece 2-0.
Greece lost all their first round
matches to Argentina, Bulgaria
and Nigeria conceding 10 goals and scoring none.
Both Ugbade and Iroha were speaking in
the aftermath of Greece’s
poor results in their build-up for South Africa 2010, the latest of
which was a
2-0 defeat to fellow World Cup qualifiers Paraguay on Wednesday in
They had a few days earlier played out an unimpressive 2-2 draw against
World Cup bound side North Korea.
"I wasn’t impressed with what I saw but
it gave me a great deal
of hope because if the Super Eagles coaches do their homework then they
get a victory over Greece. Hopefully, they should get a result against
Argentina in their opening match before facing Greece," continued Ugbade
referring to the opening match on June 12 against the Argentines.
Ugbade then added: "Their defence was
leaky. They were easily
exposed by fast counter attacks and they were too predictable when going
forward." Decent attack The Greek forward line of Theofanis Gekas and
Samaras, irrespective of the score lines against North Korea and
still had some decent shots at goal.
But Iroha believes they can be
curtailed. "Samaras, with his
height will always be a threat especially at set pieces but the Super
are defending better as a unit and should beat the Greeks.
"I think they might lose all their
matches. In fact any team
that drops points to Greece will have to do a lot of catching up with
teams in the group," he added.
Korean coach cautious
Coach of the South Korean team, Huh
Jung-moo however calls for
caution as he feels it’s still too early to write off the Greeks.
Huh who watched Wednesday’s match in
Austria alongside his
assistant coach Jung Hae-sung and a video analyst told the Korean news
"Greece is also preparing for the World Cup.
"Some of their starters were out of the
game. The important
thing is the Greece team of June 12th." "The set-pieces are still a
threat. We should not evaluate (Wednesday’s) team. We have to analyze,
and prepare," added Huh who nevertheless admitted that the Greek defence
susceptible to fast counter attacks.