Super Eagles listening to President Buhari's virtual call ahead of the match against Tunisia

By Usama Abdullahi

If there’s anything I have learnt from Super Eagles’ sad loss in this year’s AFCON is the absurdity associated with it. Of course, it’s unfortunate Nigeria lost to Tunisia in the round of 16 yesterday. But, as a patriotic citizen, what do you do? Of course, you express your grief about that and hope for the better next time. Period!

Contrary to this, several unpatriotic citizens who are also lacking in maturity attribute the team’s misfortune to Nigeria’s President Muhammadu Buhari. I thought they were joking, but it turned out that they meant what they said. Before the commencement of the match, Buhari had a virtual call with the team in which he encouraged them. 

But as the match ended in favour of Tunisia, the media was full of aggressive and disparaging remarks about the call and the President. Some foolishly described the President’s call as a disastrous one, which, however, ‘led’ to the painful yet unexpected exit of the Nigerian Super Eagles from the AFCON.

However, this didn’t surprise me because, before the match kickoff, some simpletons had already predicted and discounted the team’s failure out of obviously immutable dislike for the President’s encouraging call. We are a society easily driven by silliness. 

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If you buy into the nutty notion that the President’s call was the reason for the team’s woeful undoing, then you’re no different from the person living with psychosis. This mental illness makes you behave abnormally and believe things that aren’t true. 

Let’s stop this nonsense, accept the defeat smilingly, congratulate our lads for their previous victories, and encourage them to do better ahead of the Qatar World Cup playoff match.

Usama Abdullahi wrote from Abuja, Nigeria. He can be reached at

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