Stephen Okechukwu Keshi aka The Big Boss, was born on the 23rd of January, 1962 with a playing career spanning over 18 years for both club and country scoring 9 times for Nigeria in 64 games. His first club was ACB in Lagos Nigeria (1979) and he also played for New Nigerian Bank (1980 – 1984). He was in the ranks of Stade d’Abidjan and Africa Sports (both in Ivory Coast) between 1985 and 1986. He played for Belgian sides Lokeren and Anderlecht (between 1986 and 1991) before moving to Strasbourg in France (1991 – 1993). He moved back to Belgium to join Molenbeek (1993 – 1994). In 1995 he progressed to the United States (is it right to say so?) where he joined VVC Hydra and later signed for Sacramento Scorpions (1996) where he joined erstwhile team mate in the national team, Austin Eguaveon before hanging his boots after a one year stint with Perlis FA in 1997. His playing career was quite satisfactory with a few trophies won here and there but the biggest of them all was the AFCON in Tunisia (1994). He was also part of the Nigerian team that qualified for 1994 World cup in U.S.A (the best World cup ever). His major coaching break was with the Togolese national team in 2004, qualifying them for the 2006 Nation’s cup in Egypt and World cup in Germany. He was sacked by the Togolese FA after a poor Nation’s cup performance and replaced by Otto Pfister from Germany to lead them to the World cup. Like they would have gone past the group stage, shior. He was rehired by the Togolese FA in 2007 before he took up the challenge of leading the Eagles of Mali in 2008 but was sacked after the 2010 Nations cup in Angola for failing to lead them past the group stage. Keshi seemed to love Togo. He made a brief return to coach the Togolese team again in 2011 before the Nigerian Football Federation (NFF) handed him a chance to coach the Super Eagles. He qualified the Nigeria for the AFCON 2013 holding in South Africa where he has ultimately led them into the final.
There isn’t much to say about Paul Put. No be my guy like that jare, especially as he is leading a team that wants to pour sand inside our garri. GOD no gree dem. See me oh, like say na Satan Burkina Faso people dey worship. Anyway Paul Put born in May 1956 was handed the reins at Burkina Faso in 2012 after he was sacked in 2011 by Gambia. Gambia sef dey sack person? Hian. Anyway Put was never a player unlike his Nigerian counterpart though he coached some top Belgian clubs like Lierse and Lokeren. The long and short of his story is he has led Burkina Faso into the final of an AFCON tourney for the first time. The best the Burkina babes have done was a fourth place finish in 1998 where they were hosts. I think Paul Put has done a fantastic job with the Stallions. They play good football and I think the only edge they have over the Super Eagles is their mental strength. All that one na story jor. Come Sunday Nigeria would be crowned Kings of Africa a third time.
This is the 29th edition of the Nations Cup and the last 28 editions have been won by 14 African born and 14 Foreign born coaches. Who is going to take the day? Keshi (African) or Put (Foreigner)? Keshi will. My mouth don dey too much abi? I hear the Super Eagles didn’t celebrate the victory over Mali citing that they hadn’t finished the job just yet. That’s good news. See the joke of the week “the Malian goalkeeper was rumored to have said they didn’t play against Nigeria, that it was Brazil they played”. Not funny abi? Make una no vex.
Please I am begging drop comments and share with your friends……. Good Luck to the Super Eagles on Sunday and I truly hope Jonathan Pitroipa’s red card is rescinded. I no wan hear say no be full team dem use when we beat Burkina Faso on Sunday. I don make mouth again? *covering face*
Cheers wonderful people.
Twitter handles: @theswizzmemoirs or @dipoogun