Super Eagles captain, John Mikel Obi is not happy with the way the National Team lost to Madagascar in their final AFCON group stage match for the 2019 edition.
Nigeria, favourites to win the group had earlier beaten Burundi and Guinea 1-0 each but shockingly fell 2-0 to the Island Nation, an error from Center Back, Leon Balogun and a freekick deflected in by Wilfred Ndidi.
“We have to pick ourselves up and go again,” Mikel told NigerianFootballer.com.
Gernot Rohr made five changes to the team that played against Guinea a few days earlier with William Troost Ekong replacing Kenneth Omeruo in defence, John Ogu and John Mikel Obi replacing Wilfred Ndidi and Alex Iwobi in midfield then Samuel Kalu starting instead of Moses Simon. Ikechukwu Ezenwa was in for Daniel Akpeyi.
In spite of these changes, the Eagles were slow, uninspiring and a burden to watch.
“While we know there are no easy teams, we have to react now so we can be better in the knock out stages.
“We must improve together as a team.”
The captain insisted that he did not need to speak with the players or tell them anything since it was a collective failure and they all know where they fell short.
“I do not need to tell the players anything. We all know we have to improve. We need to find a way to start playing well because it has been difficult for us to play well.
“We won our last two group games. We need to play well and start playing well together. We must improve,” Obi said.
With Nigeria finishing second in the group, the Super Eagles will play the 2nd team on the log in Group and as it stands it could be any of Cameroon, Ghana, Benin or Guinea Bissau.