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Nigeria vs Tunisia: Super Eagles coach blames Akpeyi for Mahrez’s goal

Nigeria vs Tunisia: Super Eagles coach blames Akpeyi for Mahrez’s goal

Super Eagles goalkeeping coach, Alloy Agu, has blamed Daniel Akpeyi’s positioning, for Riyad Mahrez’s last-minute winner, in the 2-1 loss to Algeria in the semi-final of the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations.

With the game poised at 1-1 and heading for extra time, Wilfred Ndidi conceded a free-kick on the edge of the box to the left of Akpeyi’s goal.

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Mahrez stood behind the ball to the left, with Mehdi Zeffane to the right and Akpeyi arranged his wall to protect the left part of his goal.

However, the Kaizer Chiefs stopper then stood behind the wall, leaving ample space to his right, which Mahrez duly exploited to score the winner.

“First you have to look at the position where the infringement is being committed, and the first point is that you place your wall so that you can have a viewpoint [and] a direct contact with the ball. That is the first thing you have to do – you have a direct contact with the ball no matter the wall you have put in place, you must have a direct view with the ball.

“Secondly, you have to wait, you don’t move before the ball is being kicked – you wait for the ball, what makes you to move is the ball. Therefore, the second thing you need to do is you wait for the ball to be kicked. The moment the ball is kicked, because you’re having a direct contact with the ball then you can now react,” Agu told BusyBuddies.

Agu also implied that Akpeyi was badly positioned for Mahrez’s strike and said going forward, more work will be put in to ensure that the goalkeepers under his tutelage understand positioning.

“So, when you have that kind of situation in the near future, what we need to do as we continue to advocate, is that you form your wall and you are not behind your wall – you are in contact with the ball and also you take your action the moment the ball is kicked, then you react.

“You don’t have to go before the ball you react immediately after the ball has been kicked because you can see, where the ball is going to,” he added.

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