Golden Eaglets Soar

Nigeria’s U17 team aka the Golden Eaglets, recently won the Fifa U17 World Cup held in South Korea.

Interestingly enough, this is the third time that Nigeria has won this tournament and every tournament win has been in Asia. I don’t know if that is just coincidence.

I watched all of the team’s games and I was pretty impressed with their level of play. They were definitely not the most technical team at the tournament but they were extremely consistent and efficient during the run of play. I think their last game against Spain was poorest showing but they were still able to win the match in penalties.

I’ve observed that some Nigerians are critical of the makeup of the team noting the players hailed predominantly from one part of the country and that certain parts of the country had little or no representation. As a Nigerian, this should be a non-issue. The makeup of the team shouldn’t matter when it comes to player selection. All we should really care about is whether the players delivered or not. In this case, they delivered and delivered good.
Sports has the ability of bridging gaps that exist in the society (at least temporarily) . It brings people from different tribes and races together for a moment. In Nigeria, it brought people from all parts of the country together for 3 weeks. I long to see the day when I’m looked at by my fellow Nigerian simply as a Nigerian and not as an “Ibo man”.

Congrats Golden Eaglets and thanks for unifying us for at least a short while.


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