Al-Nassr of Saudi Arabia attacker, Ahmed Musa has disclosed that a tactical approach based on patience and staying calm under pressure helped him and his colleagues in the Super Eagles defeat South Africa 2-1 in Wednesday’s quarter-finals fixture at the Africa Cup of Nations.
Although many Nigerians would argue that the Eagles looked laid back, timid and indecisive on the night in Cairo International Stadium, Musa pointed out that they had to play that way to curtail the rampaging South Africans, who he recalled caught Egypt napping on the counter.
The former Kano Pillars, VV Van Venlo of Holland, CSKA Moscow of Russia and Leicester City of England star, who again captained Nigeria on the night, further stated that Bafana Bafana rely on wing play to make hay, hence the resolve by Eagles’ coach, Gernot Rohr for a patient approach.
He admitted further during Mega Sports on Star 101.5 FM, Lagos that the Eagles also rely to a large extent on wing play, which would have left the match too open had they also gone on full attack all through the game, hence their decision to sit back and absorb pressure.
The stand-in captain, who was personally not on top of his game and had to give way to Moses Simon towards the end of proceedings, concluded by giving plaudits to the young ones, especially Samuel Chukwueze, who was named man of the match, following a super goal and great display.
Musa added: “Both teams play from the wings; so, we told ourselves we have to be patient in this game, not to rush ourselves looking for goals.
“That is why we stayed back for them to attack and waited for them to do what they wanted to do before we reacted.
“We watched what they did against Egypt, how they lie putting the ball behind the defenders, and it worked for them.
“We had to be careful, this was the not the time to joke. But we know we have a good team.
“Even when we lost to Madagascar, we know what we can do and that we can win. We told ourselves we will not lose another match again.
“Now we have won, we are in the semi-finals, and we are all happy. It was also good to see young players like Chukwueze doing so well.
‘We the older ones are about to leave. It means there will be some players ready to take over once we leave. That’s very good for Nigeria.”