How I Bounced Back From AFCON 2021 Disappointment – Aribo
Super Eagles midfielder Joe Aribo has revealed how he recovered from the disappointment of the team’s early exit from the 2021 Africa Cup of Nations in Cameroon.
The Super Eagles started the competition on a positive note edging out Mohamed Salah’s Egypt, and also defeated Sudan and Guinea-Bissau to finish the group stage with a hundred percent record.
Aribo and his teammates were however sent packing from the competition in the Round of 16 after a disappointing 1-0 defeat to the Carthage Eagles of Tunisia.
“There was disappointment at [Nigeria] not going as far as I felt we could have done because we had a good group stage. There was a bit in my feelings and it showed in my form,” Aribo told the Scotsman
‘I had to put it behind me and had a chat with the manager. He said he’d been there, he’d been in about five semi-final losses and that’s a hard thing to endure. He really helped me get back.
It’s always good to have a manager who has been there and done it. Everyone can go through their own things personally, but a manager with that kind of experience knows how to be and what buttons to push.”
Aribo’s versatility has endeared him to manager Giovanni van Bronckhorst and the fans.
The former Charlton Athletic player has played in three positions for Gers throughout his three-year career at the Ibrox.
“I’m just happy to be out there, helping the boys whatever way I can,” Aribo said.
‘It’s different compared to playing in midfield areas, of course. But I want to add goals into my game so in that sense there is an easier chance to score.
‘I’ve not really played that much up front. It’s one I’m still adapting to.
‘When I find out that I’m going to be playing up front, I speak a lot with Roy [Makaay, assistant coach].
‘He tells me some movements. He knows that I’m strong and can battle with defenders and back in.
‘You can’t get a better guy when you think about his career, what he did, it just shows I’m not in bad company and can learn from him.”