Ex-international Mutiu
Adepoju has scored the
performance of Nigerians in
foreign leagues this season
as average while singling
out a few for praise.
John Obi Mikel and
Efe Ambrose emerged
champions in the English
and Scottish leagues
respectively, while Odion
Ighalo’s goalscoring
prowess helped his side gain
promotion to the English
Premier League.
According to Adepoju,
who was nicknamed
Headmaster in his playing
days, only a few deserve
applause while making a case
for Super Eagles talisman,
Emmanuel Emenike whose
performance in the season
under review was less than
inspiring.
“The season was not
totally a bad one for
Nigerians in Europe most
especially the Super Eagles
stars. Only few Nigerians
did very well, the likes of
(Kenneth) Omeruo, (Victor)
Anichebe (Ikechukwu) Uche
and Ighalo who scored so
many great goals that helped
his team secure a place in
the English Premiership,”
Adepoju told Goal.
“For Emenike, I would
say strikers do have
moments when they fire
blanks and I think that
was what happened to the
Fernabache forward this
season.
“We should not crucify
him for misfiring. He is no
doubt a great player and
has proven many times
though many would want
to rate him based on the
goals he scored but I think
this is not (a good) season
and I hope he bounces back
next season.”
The former Real Sociedad
player also said Chelsea
midfielder Mikel deserved
his Premier League medal
despite not enjoying much
playing time under Jose
Mourinho, and that he
could have done more.
“I don’t want to believe
(Mikel) is an opportunist
like people think. He never
had many playing chances
but he was very fantastic in
the ones he featured in for
Chelsea,” he continued.
“Frankly speaking, to
play in a big team like
Chelsea year in, year out is
no easy feat and we should
applaud him for that.
“And for those who have
not had enough time this
season, they should sit up
and prove to their managers
that they are good enough
to get a starter’s shirt.
“Should they continue
to warm the bench next
season, that will not be
good for the image of the
country because we are a big
national team and should
have our stars commanding
regular shirts in Europe,” he
concluded.


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