Taribo, a member of the gold winning Atlanta ’96 Olympics squad, as well as member of the Super Eagles team to France ‘98 and Korea/Japan 2002 World Cup, told The Guardian yesterday that the football culture, which made the duo of Westerhof and Bonfrere to succeed with the national team, were dead, and should be resurrected.
“In the days of Clemens Westerhof and Jo Bonfrere, there was a football culture that was so useful to the Nigerian football system,” Taribo, who is now a pastor, said.
“That was why Nigerian football fans did not feel it so much when Stephen Keshi left the stage.
It also helped us when Rashidi Yekini and our generation left the team because younger players had already been groomed to take over from us. We need to go back to that football culture.
“But I see coach Gernot Rohr moving towards that direction. He was wise enough to prepare some young players for a crucial moment like this.
The likes of Mikel Obi, Victor Moses and Alex Iwobi won’t be available for the Nations Cup qualifier against Seychelles this weekend, but I don’t see their absence affecting the Eagles because we have some young players who can deliver.
“In the next two or three years, Mikel, Ogeyi Onazi and some other members of the team would no longer be there, and that is why we must go back to that football culture adopted by Westerhof and Bonfrere,” he stated.
Taribo urged the team to do everything possible to beat Seychelles this weekend and also fly pass Libya to keep alive Nigeria’s hope of qualifying for Cameroun 2019 AFCON.