By Amaechi Agbo
The Chairman, FCT Football Association, Adam Mouktar has stated that going back to grassroots football development remains the panacea to discouraging performances national teams have recorded in recent times.
Alhaji Mouktar who said this in interview recently while reacting to Nigeria’s national U-23 team, otherwise known as Olympic team, who crashed out of the 2020 Tokyo Olympic qualifiers in Egypt, said he felt said over the state of football in the country and the performances of national teams in recent competitions.
He noted that to Nigerians football is the highlights of Olympics and for the two national teams – the Super Falcons and the Olympic Team – to miss out in the games means that Nigeria Football Federation should go back to the basis and fix football in the country.
“I feel very sad to be honest with you. It has not been good news in the last couple of months in terms of some of the competitions that we have gone into. Female football, youth football and now the Olympic team. It is very sad that we will not be at the Tokyo Olympics.
“Football is really the highlights of the Olympics from Nigeria point of view. So it is really something and we need to do something about it.
“I think the minister has said that we need to do something, we need to reorganise. So I am very sure that as a leader he will call for a stakeholders meeting on how the way forward should be. As I always say we have to go back to the basics – grassroots, school sports, facilities need to be improved upon and sports need to be in the forefront of youth development as a national strategy not just as a part-time as we put it here.
“If you go round most of the schools, they do not have proper structures for sports. If you do not development from the grassroots, you do not make sure that these youths go to competitions both locally, nationally and internationally, then you have not developed the talent that we want to represent Nigeria at any level in every sport anywhere,” he said.