Super Eagles coach, Jose Peseiro, has jumped to the defence of goalkeeper, Francis Uzoho, following his side’s 2-1 loss to Algeria in an international friendly on Tuesday.
Nigeria and Algeria were locked at 1-1 when a 28-yard shot from Youcef Atal beat a poorly positioned Uzoho after the Eagles failed to clear a corner kick.
Shots from range have become an issue for the goalkeeper as he recently fumbled Thomas Partey’s fierce shot just outside the box in March when the Eagles were held 1-1 in Abuja, ended the team’s qualification hopes for the World Cup.
“Anybody can make a mistake,” Peseiro told ESPN.
“But the first big mistake was our second goal. We scored a clear goal and the referee said offside. It was not offside. Everybody can see it was no offside.”
“We did a fantastic job in defensive possession. I think we can do more in offensive possession. We can control more of the ball, we can show more character, we can be more aggressive.”
Despite the defeat, Peseiro remains optimistic that he is on course to win the next AFCON.
“I am more confident than before after this match,” he added.
“One more step to that challenge to win the AFCON. Of course, before that, we need to qualify, we need more camping, we need more friendly matches because we want our team to play at a high level.
“For that, we need to improve our organisation, try new dynamics, new set pieces and work hard and believe that we can be better. We have the talents but we have to improve our organisation.”
I choose the best of the best – Peseiro
Peseiro, while speaking to NFF TV, said he chooses the best players at all times although injuries have limited his choices but looks forward to facing his country of birth in November.
“It’s my country until then we will be observing our players. I am happy to play against Portugal and I wish to do a good job there.
“But until then, I await the return of the players who are out injured, some are not fit while some are not performing at the highest level, I wish that they get in top gear”
“I choose the best of the best, we have many players. It’s my job to choose the best players.
“I hope we don’t have too many injuries, although it can happen, ” he said.
The Super Eagles fell to a 2-1 loss in Oran against Algeria, meaning they have lost all friendly games under the Portuguese tactician.
This article was most recently revised and updated 2 months ago