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Michael Nsien: Nigerian-American coach shares bold vision to lead Super Eagles

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By Monsurah Olatunji

Michael Nsien, a Nigerian-American coach currently managing the U.S.A. U20 national team, has emerged as a surprising contender for the vacant Super Eagles head coach position.

Following the departure of Portuguese coach Jose Peseiro after the 2023 Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON), the Nigeria Football Federation opened applications for qualified candidates to fill the role.

Nsien, aged 43, who has carved out a career in coaching after his playing days, outlined his vision for the Nigerian national team in an interview with Punch.

Having represented Nigeria at the U23 level in 2003, Nsien brings a wealth of experience both as a player and a coach. His coaching journey has taken him through various youth ranks in the United States, where he has honed his skills over the past decade.

Reflecting on his coaching philosophy, Nsien emphasized his commitment to playing an exciting brand of football that resonates with Nigerians.

“I would do it in the style that Nigerians want to see. Brave, relentless, with flair,” Nsien asserted, highlighting his desire to balance defensive discipline with attacking prowess.

Acknowledging Nigeria’s abundance of talented attacking players, Nsien emphasized the importance of empowering the squad to play with freedom and confidence.

“We have too many top attacking players to sit back and take pressure,” he explained, emphasizing the need for a proactive and dynamic approach.

Nsien drew inspiration from influential coaches like Arsene Wenger, Pep Guardiola, Jose Mourinho, and Roberto De Zerbi, underscoring his admiration for those who dare to innovate and transform the game.

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As the search for a new Super Eagles head coach continues, Nsien’s bold vision and diverse background could make him a compelling candidate to lead Nigeria into an exciting new era on the international stage.

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