Addis Ababa, Ethiopia– The Walyas of Ethiopia have soundly beaten their ‘Ocean Stars’ counterparts of Somalia 5-0 yesterday. All credit goes to the local boys.
Having said that, I don’t think yesterday’s match would have garnered as much interest as it did from all corners of the country had Ethiopia won the first leg match in Djibouti.
I wrote this article to share with you on how the local media covered the match and some of the positive and negatives things that I have observed.
Improved TV Coverage
Ethiopian Television (ETV) should be commended for providing a much improved coverage of the event. Television is all about images. The close-up shots of fans and their reactions made it a much enjoyable experience.
Another positive change that we saw is the number of cameras used and the actions they were able to capture from various angles. This is a far cry from the days where ETV used only two cameras, which gave us limited viewing capability.
However, it is still a work in progress as shots behind the goal posts and the replays need improvement. Furthermore, we want to see more close up shots of the players themselves.
Local Media Coverage
If you have not watched the match but listened simply to the media report, you would think that Ethiopia had lost the match. One of the local media concentrated on just the number of spoiled goal opportunities. Come on! Despite all the difficulties the Somalia national team has played under, they were able to put Ethiopian forwards at bay on foreign soil.
One cannot help being fade up with the post-match report of how the short passing football (1-2, as they call it here) is the only fitting way Ethiopian footballers are comfortable and effective with. This, while we have watched some dangerous looking long passes during the match. I guess that should be left to the coach altogether but we still can talk about it, can’t we?
To comment on the ineffectiveness of the long passes is one thing, but to simply lament on the subject is tiresome. How about mixing the two systems and using that as an option? We should not forget that football is not just about entertainment but it is also about scoring and winning matches. We are not entertained for 90 minutes even in the advanced football leagues, are we?
I believe that the Ethiopian team has a lot of work to do before its next match but let us be mindful that the team has done well in the preliminaries and has now reached the group stages of 2014 FIFA World Cup qualifier.
Ephrem Melaku has a Masters Degree in Journalism and Communication. He lives in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia and he has interest in local and international football (soccer) and Ethiopian athletics.