Good morning Guys,
I was really shocked by the feedback on the blog yesterday. It was amusing. Honestly, the response by way of hits on the blog yesterday was akin to what it used to be like in the foremost days of blogging here. I mean views yesterday were at an all time low!
That got me thinking. Yea I know no one wants to hear us report defeats and all but it’s not the first time we’ve lost a game this season. However yesterday’s was just indicative of how awful we and things have been this season. We have tried to inspire ourselves, staying supportive of the team and the gaffer but I think people are becoming just tired of our endless ‘trying you make sense of it all’.
If you’ve been an Enyimba fan for a while, you know this is the stage of the season where we begin to put together some decent run. Enyimba is known to be a strong ‘second half of the season’ team. One time I spoke with Femi Thomas he said, “Jungle go soon mature, we will separate the boys from the men”.
On the face of it, in our League, no one really complains about losing games away from home. It’s a norm. I even heard one respectable administrator on television saying, “when they beat you at their home, you come back and beat them at your place”. It hence becomes surprising when you get three points away from home.
But you see, Enyimba is not everybody. That’s what makes us who we are. Last season for instance, (oh trust me, we wouldn’t stop talking of last season) we didn’t win every away game but we put up a decent fight. We stayed strong. Not just effortlessly turning your backside and getting lashed.
Our League title last season was won courtesy of a decent away form and a airtight defence. Places like Ibadan, Bauchi, Bayelsa, Port Harcourt, Lagos (vs Sunshine) and Lafia saw us leave with points. We even got all three in other venues. It was that stout and fearless identity that defines Enyimba. That is why teams have highest attendances when Enyimba comes to town.
So I believe the biggest problem of this Enyimba 5.1 version is a lack of that Enyimba identity. Decent players, a decent technical crew but we are not Enyimba-like YET. Enyimba never goes to a venue and concedes three goals. In fact just once last season did we get beat by more than one goal, that was in Nnewi.
My ranting this morning is simple, AS FAR AS THATENYIMBAFAN IS CONCERNED, the problem of this team isn’t the gaffer. Yea I said that. The problem with this team is not that there are no goalscorers. The problem with this team isn’t that the players are not trying hard enough. Our problem is that we are not an Enyimba side yet.
This is a team of good football playing ‘strangers’. This isn’t to exonerate the bad performers. There are those who made near zero contribution this term but the bulk of this lot needs to see themselves more than just mercenaries paid to help the club’s cause. That marriage, that love, that understanding of what this club is about is missing.
That was why Kadiri Ikhana’s second missionary journey to us worked to perfection. Enyimba is about the only club where supporters give the team such stick despite the fact that we have not kicked a football on our home turf this year. The only club where ‘home’ wins only are not just enough.
The day these demands we make of our club ends, then Enyimba truly dies. And for the players and technical crew who believe we are too hard on this team, you may want to reconsider your stay with us. It would also be nice to consider your inspiration as a professional footballer/coach. Regardless of where you go, who you play, you cannot just accept defeat as being OK. It should make you unsatisfied with your contribution and seek ways for amends.
We play Rivers United in Ibadan tomorrow for the place in the Federation Cup semis and there will be a preview for that one in tomorrow’s blog. Today’s post however should be some soul-searching in preparation for that tie.