Diary of a mad journo: Preview to Tom and Jerry


By Nduka Orjinmo

And so and after many months of dallying and keeping those interested in suspense, the NFF finally unveiled Tom Saintfet as technical director of the nation’s football teams.

If only our directors in Nollywood would emulate the patience and tact of the NFF.

Coming in with a bag of experience in African football, he is expected to develop our football by providing a technical template for our national teams.

Put succinctly he is coming in to ensure that our national teams look the same way in all cadres.

From the Eaglets to the Super Eagles, his task is to ensure that there is a uniformity of structure.

It is going to be a difficult job, a very difficult job for Tom, a man whose first name and salt and pepper hair points to an amicable and likeable fellow and whose last name has a religious connotation.

I hope he is a religious man, because he will need it.

If he is not and sees Africa in the same light as the former Ghana boss Goran Stevanovic, then he should contact Bash Ali for some Bendel Insurance.

First to fire the salvo at Tom is high chief Adeboye Onigbinde, who described the Belgian as being unfit for the job.

Though he did not present himself for the job, his refusal to mention any capable hand and the fact that he took Bartholomew Ogbeche to the World Cup after a bicycle kick makes his shot a cheap one, and Tom should not really be bothered.

The CAF and FIFA instructor’s football knowledge in the modern game will stand out like Tales by Moonlight on HD television.

But bother he should, when the ever Green one comes calling, as come he would, the head of the all powerful technical committee usually has a huge say, when it concerns football in the country.
Ask the five Super Eagles players who will never play for the country again, ask those who have crossed paths with the Port Harcourt boy, and they will tell you.

He is a crushing force with a huge say. So as head of the technical department, where does his job interface with Tom’s, who is superior to the other?

How will he relate with the Big Boss? A man boasting of an even bigger profile than he.

Has Tom qualified a team for the World Cup? How many times has he coached at the Africa Cup of Nations?

I pity the man, and I don’t envy his job.

But I will be watching him closely, his hair I mean.

Will he leave bald at the end of his stay here? In the main time, I advise you grab several editions of Tom and Jerry, it’s about to be played out.

You can follow Nduka Orjinmo on twitter via @orjinmonduka
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