Super Eagles: Finidi George highlights subtle tactical modification against Ghana

Super Eagles new coach Finidi George will be under pressure after dropping two points at home.


Finidi George made some tactical alterations in Nigeria's win over Ghana (Imago)

Super Eagles: Finidi George highlights subtle tactical modification against Ghana

Seye Omidiora 04:39 - 23.03.2024

The interim Nigeria boss disclosed reasons for the change from the Super Eagles’ Africa Cup of Nations approach under Jose Peseiro.

Interim Nigeria coach Finidi George has explained why he opted for a 3-5-2 in the Super Eagles’ first win over Ghana since 2006.

Nigeria vs Ghana

A Cyriel Dessers penalty put Nigeria 1-0 up heading into the interlude at Stade de Marrakech, and it stayed that way until the three-time African champions added to their lead after a flowing team goal finished off after Kelechi Iheanacho, Alex Iwobi and Ademola Lookman all combined, with the latter converting with aplomb.

A late Jordan Ayew spot-kick halved the deficit for the Black Stars in the game’s 95th minute, but it was too late for Otto Addo’s men to mount a comeback.

What Finidi George said about Nigeria’s formation against Ghana

Asked about the team opting to keep Jose Peseiro’s 3-4-2-1 approach from the Africa Cup of Nations, the Nigerian football legend clarified that it was not wholly the same formation utilised against Ghana, as Iheanacho partnered Dessers up top, with Iwobi intermittently joining the attack.

“We didn’t keep the same [formation],” explained George in a pitch-side interview with journalists. “We played with a 3-5-2, but at the AFCON it was only Osimhen, and we felt he was doing so much running alone, so I wanted some other player in a strike pairing.

“We could see once a player gets the ball, there was an opportunity for a pass. We had to take some risks, but we had to get something positive going forward.”

George did not reveal if the same approach would be utilised in Nigeria’s next friendly match but noted that changes could be made to avoid overburdening his players.

What comes next for the Super Eagles after victory over Ghana?

Nigeria face Mali in Marrakech on March 26 in their second and final friendly of the international break, the Super Eagles’ final gathering before pivotal World Cup qualifying games with South Africa and Benin on June 3 and 10, respectively.

George is guaranteed to lead the team out next Tuesday, but Nigeria may have made a change in three months.