Fidelis Ilechukwu: My players' mentality need to change to achieve better results

Published on: 05 November 2022

Before their match against Libya's Al Akhdar in the second leg of the CAF Confederation Cup playoffs, Plateau United coach Fidelis Ilechukwu acknowledged that his team's confidence concerns require professional assistance.

After his team's impressive 4-1 victory against the Libyans on Wednesday in Abuja, Ilechukwu reacted to the win and talked about what needs to improved on in the second leg.

The former MFM gaffer who was reacting to a question about the quality of the team his played previously and the Libyans.

Ilechukwu said if his team had played Al Akhdar they way they played Esperance, the goals would have been more. He bled it on his mentality which needs psychological attention.

"We had very good matches against Esperance here in Nigeria and in Tunisia. The matches were far better than today’s (Wednesday) match against Al Akdar. If we played the way we did against Esperance, we would have scored about eight goals."

"Our problem has to do with our mentality. We need to have a psychologist to help motivate the players. I noticed that after the first half, the goals didn’t come and football is about mentality. I discovered that they weren’t happy and I had to step in to ensure they were in the right frame of mind. And we had more goals for us to win 4-1," He said in an interview with Daily Trust.

On the team losing steam at some point in the game against Al Akhdar, asked if it was due to fatigue, the Plateau United Coach said:

"I think the problem of the team is not lack of rest as we didn’t train on Monday. It was a full day of rest. But since we came to Abuja, we didn’t have a place to really train as much as we wanted. We don’t want to complain so that people will not misunderstand us. And the pitch here is not too good. On Monday and Tuesday, we did a walk out. What I saw was a team under pressure to score goals.

Ilechukwu revealed that the team will be going back to the drawing board to ensure they work on all departments in order to emerge victorious at the end of the second leg.



By Uche Dozie