Nigeria John Obi Mikel

African Pride: Nigeria's history makers

In the final episode of African Pride, football analyst Christophe Bongo reflects on the World Cup history of Nigeria's Super Eagles as they ready themselves for their first match in Russia this weekend.

The Super Eagles have a rich World Cup history. They are the African team with the most appearances at the World Cup (six), the most consecutive qualifications (three), the most appearances in the Last 16 (three) and the biggest scoreline (3-0 against Bulgaria in 1994).

Bongo's reflection starts with Nigeria's appearance in the 1994 FIFA World Cup in the United States, which the Super Eagles played in against a backdrop of political and social tension in their home country, and which is fondly remembered by many as a 'golden era' of Nigerian football.

After General Sani Abacha seized power in a military coup in late 1993, international tensions were high, and football became "the tool that Nigeria used to communicate with the outside world".

The fortunes of the national team had served as a barometer to the state of the nation, and a lot of responsibility was placed on the national team to boost the morale of the nation.

Christophe Bongo, football analyst

In fact, Nigeria played under a directive known as "Directive 101", which gave the military regime "carte blanche to interfere" with football, turning the team's performance into a propaganda machine.

Mostly isolated from the news back home, the Super Eagles soared, and finished top of their group. The success went to their head, and they crashed out of the last 16.

Shortly before kick-off in 1998, Abacha died at his villa and was replaced by Abdulsalami Abubakar.

Abubakar made a Super call to wish the Super Eagles Super Luck.

Christophe Bongo, football analyst

The Super Eagles were absent from the World Cup in 2006, but reappeared in 2010 and 2014, albeit with lackluster appearances.

Will 2018 be the year that the Super Eagles soar once again? Take a listen to Bongo's analysis below.

Listen to all five episodes of African Pride with Christophe Bongo below.


This article first appeared on CapeTalk : African Pride: Nigeria's history makers


Recommended

by NEWSROOM AI
Read More
'Hospitable' Nigeria ready to make investors feel at home

'Hospitable' Nigeria ready to make investors feel at home

While in Port Harcourt, Africa Connected's Lee Kasumba met with Professor Steve Azaiki, coordinator of National Think Tank Nigeria.

Solutionist Thinking: In Conversation with Tshepo Moloi

Solutionist Thinking: In Conversation with Tshepo Moloi

This week's Solutionist Thinker is bringing the 200-year-old tradition of stokvels into the 21st century. Meet StokFella founder Tshepo Moloi.

Solutionist Thinking: In Conversation with Stacey Brewer

Solutionist Thinking: In Conversation with Stacey Brewer

A school with individual learning paths for each child, and no need for textbooks? SPARK Schools CEO Stacey Brewer joins Bruce Whitfield.

Solutionist Thinking: In Conversation with Arlene Mulder

Solutionist Thinking: In Conversation with Arlene Mulder

In the next episode of Solutionist Thinking with RMB, Bruce Whitfield speaks with We Think Code founder Arlene Mulder.

Solutionist Thinking: In Conversation with Reuel Khoza

Solutionist Thinking: In Conversation with Reuel Khoza

In the first episode of Solutionist Thinking with RMB, Bruce Whitfield speaks with author, businessman and trailblazer Reuel Khoza.

African Pride Podcast: Senegal's World Cup Dream

African Pride Podcast: Senegal's World Cup Dream

After stunning the world in 2002, Senegal missed the next three FIFA World Cup tournaments. Christophe Bongo takes a look.

Popular articles
Parktown Boys: Body of missing Enock Mpianzi found

Parktown Boys: Body of missing Enock Mpianzi found

Gauteng Education MEC Panyaza Lesufi confirms that the missing body has been found by the police.

[VIDEO] Family saved from being hit by speeding SUV goes viral

[VIDEO] Family saved from being hit by speeding SUV goes viral

Khabazela shares tweets and Facebook posts that have gone viral.

Civil society organisations call for  #SandtonShutdown

Civil society organisations call for #SandtonShutdown

Rise Up Against Gender-Based Violence fundraising director Mandisa Khanyile says the will hand over a memorandum to the JSE.