We’d feel more pain failing to qualify, says Leon Balogun


Super Eagles defender Leon Balogun has disclosed that the players feel more pain when they fail to win games or qualify for tournaments more than the fans.

Balogun said this in an interview with ESPN explaining that he understood the pain fans feel when their teams don’t qualify for tournaments, but their pain is more amplified.

He said, “If it is important for you as a fan who is not on the pitch, but who is dreaming of seeing us play there, what do you think it means for us who are involved on the pitch,

“You get the chance to play, and it gets stolen away from you. So you can imagine your pain [as a fan] is the pain we feel, but our pain is your pain times a hundred probably.

Since qualifying for their first World Cup in 1994, Nigeria have missed just one edition, the 2006 edition hosted by Germany.

However, the Rangers defender stated that while the fans will always have the opportunity to see their teams play, the players have a limited shot at representing their country in tournaments.

He said, “You are probably still going to get opportunities to go to the World Cup but we are going to be sidelined and watch it on TV, and that’s what hurts. So we understand [what it means].”


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