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Thursday, February 22, 2024


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By Lovette Ochicha

Belgian coach Tom Saintfiet has openly expressed his desire to lead the Nigerian national football team, the Super Eagles, to victory in the upcoming Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) and the FIFA World Cup.

Saintfiet, currently the head coach of The Gambia, believes he possesses the coaching prowess to elevate Nigeria to exceptional success on the continental and global stages.

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In an interview with Punch, Saintfiet revealed;“To be honest, it was always my dream and it is always my dream to work with the Super Eagles. For me, they are probably the strongest football nation in Africa with so much quality in the local league and in Europe.”

The coach highlighted Nigeria’s potential, stating that the country could have achieved greater success, including reaching the semi-finals or more at the World Cup, with the right coaching strategy and tactics.

“What Morocco did, Nigeria could have done many times, reaching the semi-finals and even more at the World Cup. If they had the right coaching strategy and right tactics, they would have achieved that.”

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Expressing his disappointment at not securing the Nigerian coaching position in previous years (2010, 2014, and 2018), Saintfiet remains hopeful for the future.

“That’s the reason I was interested in the Nigerian job in 2010, in 2014 and 2018 but it didn’t come and hopefully, it happens in the future.”

He firmly believes that he is the coach capable of guiding Nigeria to extraordinary success in both the AFCON and the World Cup.

“It’s always a dream and I’m convinced I’m the coach who can guide Nigeria to that exceptional success both at the AFCON and the World Cup.”

The Super Eagles, led by their current head coach Jose Pereiro, have reportedly been discontent with the team’s performance.

Nigeria, known for its desire to dominate games and secure victories in spectacular fashion, has faced challenges in achieving these goals under Pereiro’s leadership.

As a result, the Nigeria Football Federation is reportedly considering a coaching change.

Among the shortlisted candidates for the position is Tom Saintfiet, whose impressive coaching background and belief in Nigeria’s potential make him a compelling candidate.

The decision to bring in a new coach is a crucial one for Nigeria as they aim to strengthen their footballing prowess and pursue success on both the African and global football stages.

The Punch, Nigeria

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