The appointment of the Portuguese manager as the substantive head coach of the three-time African champions continues to elicit diverse reactions from stakeholders
Former Super Falcons chief coach Mabo Ismaila has frowned at the Nigeria Football Federation’s decision to hire former Sporting Lisbon manager José Vítor dos Santos Peseiro as the head coach of the Super Eagles.
Ismaila insists there is no difference between Peseiro and sacked Super Eagles coach Gernot Rohr.
Rohr led the Nigerian national team for over five years, guiding the Eagles to qualify for the 2018 FIFA World Cup in Russia and a third-place finish at the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations.
But the German gaffer was often criticised for his team’s reactive and conservative style of play, which many believed was in contrast to the Super Eagles’ culture of proactive, attacking football.
Peseiro’s appointment presents a chance for the Super Eagles to play football on the front foot again, with the 62-year-old employing a similar style while in charge of Al Ahly, Porto, and Sporting Lisbon.
But Peseiro’s last job was at Venezuela last year, where he led the Red Wine to just one victory in ten matches, recording a ten per cent win rate.
And ex-Falcons tactician Ismaila sees no difference between Peseiro and Rohr.
“Peseiro doesn’t have any idea of how things are done here or our culture and it is just like bringing back Gernot Rohr but in another form,” the veteran 77-year-old coach told the Punch.
Instead of Peseiro, Ismaila expected the NFF to have appointed one of Nigeria’s former internationals who has found success both home and abroad.
“I support the hiring of the indigenous coach but not those they will have so much control over,” Ismaila said.
“Even if they want to bring a coach from abroad, they can bring our local coaches who are doing very well abroad. For instance, someone like Ndubuisi Egbo would have been a very good choice to handle the national team.
“This is someone who has been in Europe for a while, and he has the experience and has also played for Nigeria before.”
The NFF named former Super Eagles stars George Finidi and Ike Shorunmu as Peseiro assistants.