2026 World Cup Qualifiers: Legendary Peter Rufai Breaks Silence Over Nigeria’s Goalkeeping Problems

2026 World Cup Qualifiers: Legendary Peter Rufai Breaks Silence Over Nigeria’s Goalkeeping Problems

Babajide Orevba
November 20, 2023 at 3:24 PM
  • Peter Rufai has stated that the NFF is making efforts to solve the Super Eagles' goalkeeping problems
  • Since Vincent Enyeama retired in 2015, successive coaches have struggled to get the safest hands for the national team
  • Fans are piling pressure on team coach Jose Peseiro to drop Francis Uzoho

Former Nigerian international Peter Rufai has shared his thoughts on the goalkeeping problems faced by the national team in recent times.

Rufai remains one of Nigeria's greatest goalkeepers of all time having earned 65 caps for the Super Eagles and represented the nation at two FIFA World Cups in 1994 and 1998 as their first-choice goalkeeper

He was part of the squad that won the 1994 African Cup of Nations in Tunisia and retired after 20 years of professional football.

Peter Rufai, Super Eagles, Nigeria, Francis Uzoho
Peter Rufai says Nigeria's goalkeeping problem is about transition. Photo: Popperfoto
Source: Getty Images

Successive coaches also invited several other goalkeepers to the national team, but it was Vincent Enyeama who replicated the successes and went as far as earning 101 caps.

The former Enyimba goalkeeper was part of the squad that won the AFCON tournament in 2013 and since his retirement in 2015, Nigeria has struggled between the sticks, Punch reports.

When asked about his take on Francis Uzoho's situation, Rufai emphasised that it is not just about the goalkeeping position, saying the present NFF Board led by Ibrahim Gusau is making an effort to resolve some of these issues.

Rufai, who was spotted at Godswill Akpabio International Stadium in Uyo shortly before Nigeria's clash with Lesotho in the FIFA World Cup qualifier told Sports Brief:

"Like I always say, the problem we have here is the transition. I know work is going on on really shaping, re-shuffling and making sure every department of the Super Eagles is well taken care of."

Nigerians demand Jose Peseiro's sack

Sports Brief earlier reported that Nigerian fans have called on the sacking of Super Eagles coach Jose Peseiro following their draw with Lesotho and Zimbabwe in the 2026 FIFA World Cup qualifier.

The Super Eagles continue to struggle after picking only two points from a possible six following back-to-back draws against Lesotho and Zimbabwe in Group C.

Since his appointment in May 2022, Peseiro has guided the team to just 6 wins in 14 matches, managing 3 draws and losing 5.

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Babajide Orevba
Babajide Orevba is a Nigerian journalist and HOD of the Local Desk with over 10 years of experience in media landscape.He studied NCE Political Science/Social Studies, AOCOED.
NigeriaNigeria Football Federation (NFF)