“See as they mute” – Reactions trail moment Ademola Lookman, Alex Iwobi & other super Eagles players struggle to recite new national anthem during match with South Africa (Video)

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Nigerians have taken to social media to react to the moment the Super Eagles players remained silent while the new national anthem played during their match against South Africa.

This incident occurred on Friday, June 7th, during the World Cup Qualifiers at the Godswill Akpabio Stadium in Uyo. The Nigerian players were seen struggling to sing the new anthem, “Nigeria We Hail Thee,” which led to a noticeable silence.

The match, which ended in a 1-1 draw, was the third qualifying game for the three-time African champions. Singing the national anthem before kickoff is mandatory in international football matches.

On May 29, 2024, the Nigerian government officially replaced the long-standing anthem “Arise, O Compatriots” with “Nigeria, We Hail Thee” to boost national pride and reflect the country’s evolving identity.

However, before the South Africa game, the Nigerian players, including rising star Ademola Lookman and seasoned player Alex Iwobi, were seen observing the anthem in solemnity, struggling with the new lyrics.

The video of the players’ silent reaction went viral online. Many Nigerians expressed understanding, noting that the players had a short time to learn the new anthem. This reaction highlighted the challenges of adapting to sudden changes, even in something as significant as a national symbol.

Watch the video below:

Some reactions are shown below:

@ChrisBassey22 said, “How do you expect them to know the lyrics”.

@vinjahmedia said, “It clearly shows you how stup!d the whole idea is. Our lawmakers busy expending so much energy on things that have no bearing on national dev, while abandoning the very things they were voted for. Who will struggle to learn this at old age? I’m very sure the next administration will reverse it.”

@Teesaids said, “It was a solemn recitation by the Super Eagles as the none of them could boldly sing out they will really suffer in coming matches.”

@iamaleshinloye said, “How many of them even knows the first one? sabi the first one”.

@omahrico said, “no even expect them to sing. Most players no dey usually sing their anthems. Some country’s anthem don’t even have words.”