Style & Substance? No, Just Style
As Africa’s most populous county and largest economy, surely it must have a decent chance of performing well in the World Cup?
Not really. They had a decent spell from 1994 to 1998, but since then the World Cup has been continual source of disappointment Nigeria.
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Only one member of the 23-man squad plays for a Nigerian domestic. That is not great from a development perspective for the Super Eagles.
More talent in the name department than on the pitch.
Design & Branding
The biggest pre-tournament news so far is that this year’s Nigeria kit is absolute dynamite.
Call me a hypocrite but I’m going to praise the Super Eagles for doing exactly the same.
Nigeria have substituted their traditional darker green for an eye-bleaching neon green on their shirts and socks. And it works. What they’ve lost in representing their traditional colours, they’ve made up in looking so mad and colourful that people can’t help but talk about them.
This is a phenomenal branding effort from Nike. Show this shirt to anyone who has a passing interest in football and they will immediately tell you that this is Nigeria’s 2018 kit. Ask the same person to name more than five players in Nigeria’s squad and I’m not sure you’d get many responses. People have literally been queuing up around the corner to get their hands on these shirts – with Nike selling out before the tournament has even begun.
Every other team is green with envy
Sweepstake Pick: Steven Fisher
"The Super Eagles may not be the most stylish in terms of play-style but their kit and matching tracksuits gives me hope that they can at least get out of their group. Also, their nickname is the "Super Eagles", which is pretty metal." - Office metal-head Steve's opinion
The Super Eagles’ social team has totally flipped the traditional football coverage on its head. Rather than the on the exploits of the players, it instead chooses to focus its attention on the media instead. So they’re taking photos of someone who’s taking photos themselves. This is such a meta approach to social media.
Check this madness out:
What lens action!
Cheeky shot from behind:
Even when they report on matches, they don’t pay any attention whatsoever to the players, goals, or action. Instead they focus on the fans:
Nigeria are obviously focused on a customer-focused approach, which is where we should all be aiming to achieve in today’s market. Very commendable.
A non-traditional approach to social media shows flashes of brilliance.
If you’re expecting some half-time snacks and booze at a Nigerian fan party, you’re going to be disappointed. Super Eagles fans take the games quite seriously. So seriously in fact, that they don’t stop to eat a thing. You’ll have to stuff your mouth from a covert bag of pocket Doritos if you want to be fed during the match – choose your flavour wisely.
These fans are also pretty demanding bunch, their displeasure with the team’s 2010 World Cup performance led to former Nigerian president, Goodluck Jonathan, suspending the national team from international competition. Whether this was the best method of improving their fortunes remains to be seen, but I think we can that the fans' expectations are far higher than those of the rest of the world.
These guys seem like real fans. Demanding and unrealistic fans, but unrealistic fans nonetheless.
A nearly super score for the Super Eagles.