FIFA match agent Ebi Egbe says Nigeria’s 2-0 defeat by South Africa in their 2019 Africa Cup of Nations in Uyo on Saturday did not come to him as a surprise.
The stadium facility expert had warned that the Super Eagles would struggle to win the encounter because of the bad playing pitch.
Egbe, who is the CEO of Monimichelle, a stadium construction outfit, insisted that the domestic league players would have done better against South Africa because they are used to playing on undulated pitches unlike their foreign-based counterparts.
He said, “I saw the problem the Eagles faced in Uyo coming. The interviews I granted the media before the game can attest to that.
“The way the players express themselves in
Europe is not the same way they would when they come home because of the undulated pitches we have here in Nigeria.
“The Uyo stadium pitch may be the best in the country today, but it is not anywhere near the zero undulated pitches our players are used to in Europe. We can clearly see that the players found it difficult to adjust after one or two days of training on the undulated pitch, For us, to get the best out of our players, we must invest in good pitches.”
However, Egbe believes Nigeria will qualify for Cameroon 2019, saying they have the quality to beat South Africa away.
He said, “The terrain in South Africa in the return leg will favour the Eagles.”