Austin Eguavoen says Gernot Rohr’s Super Eagles must beat Cameroon in August to keep their chances of reaching the 2018 Fifa World Cup tournament alive.
Goals from Tokelo Rantie and Percy Tau ensured South Africa defeat Nigeria for the first time in a competitive game, but despite the disappointing defeat, the former national team manager believes the defeat was a wakeup call for the squad.
Eguavoen, who recently resigned from his position at Sunshine Stars added that Nigerians must not mount unnecessary pressure on the German-born tactician, saying he should be allowed to do the job he has been employed to do.
"What is expected of them is to beat Cameroon, but then it is easier said than done," Eguavoen told Goal.
"I still hope and faith in our national team, we got it wrong on that day for whatever reason I'm not sure of, but it is better it happened in our first game so we can have time to adjust.
"But I feel we should not put much pressure on this man, we have given him a job to do, all he needs from us is total support to enable him do a good job for Nigeria
"Then if he doesn't succeed, we can invite him to the round table, if he does, we applaud him, but now that everyone is trying to give him their opinion, it will probably destabilize him.
"But we still have a very bright chance and I believe it is better it happened now so that we can use this as a lesson.
"I don't think it is the right way to go, definitely he has to submit his list to the technical committee for them to instruct the secretarial to send invitations, though the technical committee has the right to ask questions regarding the players on the list.
"But then the coach will have to defend the players he invited, and that is why he is saddled with the responsibility, that is why he should be allowed to do his job and also be comfortable."