By Desmond Ekwueme
Some say it’s match rustiness suffered in Watford FC leading to AFCON tournament in Cameroon.
Others argue that the captain’s armband of the Super Eagles is either heavy or he is carrying it too high hence it’s weighing him down psychologically.
Few others say he is not in the class of the central defenders Super Eagles have had in the past like Christian Chukwu, Stephen Keshi, Chidi Nwanu, Uche Okechukwu and Taribo West among others.
The third school of thought further argues that in the absence of topnotch central defenders in the team William Troost-Ekong becomes the beautiful bride.
When preferable isn’t available then available becomes preferable.
Whichever angle of the issue you want to take, one thing is very obvious, Troost-Ekong isn’t playing the role of a skipper on the field for Super Eagles especially lately.
He may be motivating his colleagues verbally but he equally needs to improve on his game to further inspire his teammates as captain.
His dip in form didn’t just manifest in Texas, it has been like this overtime particularly during his bench warming period at Watford FC. There’s no gainsaying that the relegation of Watford FC to Championship side will also take it’s tool on the 6+ tall defender.
Indeed, Troost-Ekong has to shake-off whatever his problem is to ensure he plays the captain’s role for Nigeria now that it’s a whole new dawn with a new manager after failing to qualify for Qatar.
Defence has been a troubled department in the Super Eagles. And sadly the central defence is always suspect in the past few years.
The new manager Jose Peseiro should take a critical examination or x-ray of this department to find a lasting solution in fixing it.