The FIFA World Cup is one of the greatest sporting events in the world and it is a pride for every footballer to be part of the global showpiece. As the world awaits the kickoff of the Qatar 2022 FIFA World Cup on November 20, former Super Eagles players who missed the 2006 edition in Germany recount the absence of the national team despite the glorious fortune of the team in the early 2000s. TUNDE LIADI writes.
Nigeria will be conspicuously missing when the 2022 FIFA World Cup begins next week in Qatar. The same scenario panned out in the 2006 edition when the Super Eagles missed out on the Mundial. Some of the players who were part of the team that failed to make it to the 2006 edition are yet to come to terms with the reality of what prevented the team from qualifying then.
Being the second time Nigeria will be absent from the FIFA World Cup since its maiden outing at the 1994 edition in the United States, it was Nigeria’s arch-rival Ghana which stopped the Super Eagles from making it to Qatar this year.
Apart from the players losing value for the absence of the team, the economic impact of Nigeria’s absence would be felt by all concerned.
However, the thought of missing out on another world football fiesta for the first time since the 2006 edition in Germany evoked an unpalatable experience of the head-to-head rule which put paid to Nigeria’s inability to play at Germany’s 2006 World Cup.