Former Nigeria international Garba Lawal feels the Super Eagles are without creative midfielders following a 2-0 Africa Cup of Nations qualifier defeat to South Africa.
Having watched Gernot Rohr’s men crumble to second half strikes from Tokelo Rantie and Percy Tau at the Godswill Akpabio Stadium, the former Elfsborg midfielder gave his verdict.“It is very sad we lost such an important game against South Africa,” Lawal told Goal.
“They managed to contain us in the first half, and they came out strongly in the second half to press us and get the goals.
“We showed no creativity against South Africa. We lack creative midfielders in the team. We had no one to hold the ball, control the game and make those passing.
“I’ve always complained that there is a big difference between players who don’t play week-in, week-out for their clubs and those who play regularly.
“For Iwobi, Iheanacho and others, it is difficult for them to play better that those who play week-in, week-out for their clubs no matter how small the team in Europe.
“They contained us and stopped us from getting into their area. We don’t even have any scoring chances. We were very lucky not to have conceded five or six goals.''
“South Africa are a team we think we can beat easily. Football is dynamic and we have seen for ourselves,'' he continue. ''It is unfortunate we’ve lost by 2-0 on our home ground. It is not how well you start but how good you end. We talk the way we see the game, it is not about just been a critic.
“Winning against Zambia and Algeria does not mean we are at the top of the world. If there is anything important in football, it is continuity.”
He further, advised the German tactician to consider players playing regularly for their clubs for future engagement, stressing the exploits of Watford’s Uche Agbo who featured in 31 games for relegated Spanish side, Granada last season.
“Look at Uche Agbo in Spain, he played 31 games last season for Granada. He plays sometimes in defensive midfielder and at times in the attacking midfielder for them. I've followed him for over three months.
“If a player like that can play regularly for an European team, then he deserve a chance in the team. We must learn to get the right players to execute our games,” he concluded.