Posted by News Express | 18 September 2015 | 3,865 times
A former Minister of Sports, Bala Ka’Oje has commended the National Under-23 team for winning the men’s football bronze at the ongoing African Games in Congo Brazzaville.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the Nigerian team defeated the games host Congo 5-3 on penalties to win the bronze medal.
The team, popularly called the Dream Team VI, had lost 1-3 to Burkina Faso on Tuesday, in a semi-final encounter after a 2-0 and 1-1 draw against Ghana and Senegal respectively in the group’s earlier encounters.
Ka’Oje told NAN that the team deserved commendation considering the level of opposition in the men’s football event.
“I congratulate the players and their coaching crew; the result shows that they listened to the views of Nigerians which urged them to win the bronze as compensation.
“I will be happier next time if they win gold but the players won’t kill themselves for gold.
“Anything can happen in football; you cannot say because you didn’t win gold or silver, then, you have not done anything; no, it doesn’t work like that.
“However, the team can do better next time with training tours; so, I congratulate them and I hope they will keep it up while we expect them to do better in other tournaments they play.”
The former minister, who said he was not disappointed with the bronze medal, noted that there were countries that participated in several sporting events at the games but had yet to win a medal.
He said: “I am not disappointed with the bronze because you cannot continue to be champion in every game; one day, a team you never expected to win a game will emerge from nowhere and beat everybody.
“There are other countries that didn’t win anything but they are in Congo to win medals just like any other country.
“So, we should see it as something positive even though we expected them to do better; at times, element of luck follows some of these things, whether we like it or not.” (NAN)
•Photo shows Former Minister of Sports, Bala Ka’Oje
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