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Esin: Rohr Should Have Parked The Bus Against Argentina

Esin: Rohr Should Have Parked The Bus Against Argentina

By James Agberebi:

Former Nigeria international Etim Esin has blamed Super Eagles’ coach Gernot Rohr for failing to solidify his defence following Tuesday’s Group D 2-1 loss to Argentina at the Russia 2018 FIFA World Cup.

The Super Eagles needed just a draw to qualify alongside group leaders Croatia into the last 16 of the World Cup.

With scores at 1-1, the Super Eagles were on course before a Marcos Rojo’s 86th minute goal put paid to the dream and sent Argentina through.

“I think the coach should have brought in defence-minded players to seal up the defence,” Esin lamented in a chat with completesportsnigeria.com.

“We didn’t need to win the match, we had two options, either to win or to draw. Like I said he should have packed the bus. Immediately we equalised we should have held on to the ball, the Argentines would be the ones coming for the ball. But we allowed the Argentines to keep getting the ball and attacking us and when you allow the opposition to keep having the ball definitely a goal will come.

“Well I believe they would have learnt their lesson, they did their best but it was not good enough. And if Ighalo had buried those two chances he would have been the hero of the game.”

Despite his criticism of Rohr, Esin backed the German-born coach to still be in charge of the Super Eagles.

He said:”We have a young team and I am not in support of always sacking coaches, they should be given a long time to build a solid team. That was how Westerhof succeeded, he had more than four years to build a team starting from 1989 to 1994. Rohr has a young squad so let him build the squad and learn from his mistakes.”

He however called on the replacement of some players in the Super Eagles.

“There are those who are old and should retire and be replaced. That is what most countries do which we don’t. We should have replacements for players whose times are up in the team.

“Look at the German team that won the FIFA Confederations Cup, they were young players. So we should start looking to that direction.”

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  • Bobo Colorado Springs 3 years ago

    Mr Etim ‘Maradona ‘ Esin. Germany just crashed out disgracefully losing 2-0 to South Korea.

  • Bestsports. 3 years ago

    Lack of technical knowhow and players favouritism dumped NIGERIA out of WORLD CUP.


    Forgive IGHALO pls! Dude has apologised! Blame Coach Rohr! He killed us against CROATIA and Argentina with wrong tactics and organisation and choice of players!
    Against Argentina Rohr failed to park the bus when it’s 5mins left you quickly freshen up the TEAM with defensive substitutions but he was clueless!
    John ogu should have been brought in together with awazien but as usual waited until too late. Our coach is old. Pls its time siasia is properly brought on BOARD. Siasia na tournament coach!
    He knows all our PLAYERS everywhere and their QUALITY.
    Pls read on…

    The heartache, the talking points, the bitter disappointment that our Eagles are out of the World Cup after so much hope that this is the set that will top the other sets.

    If there’s anything we can take from this World Cup disappointment, it’s that we need to start planning for the future and that future and planning has to start now, has to start with the current U15s, U17s and U20s.

    This article isn’t just aimed at Nigeria, it’s aimed at our continent, as I write only Senegal have a hope of going to the next round as the remaining four African countries are already out.

    This is a reference for us to look into the mirror and ask ourselves why we never succeed at major tournaments over the age of 17.

    Why our continent and country keeps doing the same thing over and over and expect a different result.

    What truly do Europeans, South Americans and Asians do differently from us that makes them successful at World Cups?

    They build from the ground up, don’t take shortcuts at youth levels and they definitely don’t cheat with over aged players we’ve always done because they understand that building a successful football program isn’t about winning the U17s at all, it’s about developing player from the U13s and up, making sure those players are training at clubs that emphasizes technique, getting playing time at clubs in Europe.

    No disrespect to Turkey or China but we need players playing at leagues where technique will be developed.

    Not many graduates of our U17s get to play in Europe and most that do never have old, long careers in Europe and that’s not their fault- often, bad agents pushing them towards big clubs for big fees and forgetting that these players don’t have the foundation that European layers have.

    They don’t have coaches teaching them and engraining in their DNA the fundamentals of modern world football, after these players make a splash at the U17 World Cups, they get loaned out indefinitely until they fizzle out and end up in Turkey, Cyprus, Greece or stop all together.

    These are facts, pull up the roster of our last five U17 squads with a simple google search and Wikipedia.

    How many of those players are currently playing first team football in top leagues in Europe? How many have had sustained careers in Europe since their move ?

    There lies our issue, it starts from the ground, what are our kids being taught vs what are European kids being taught.

    Who is doing the teaching and what do they know from training and experience about the fundamentals of football and there would lie the answer.

    At the NFF, we actually have a true lover of grassroots football in Barrister Akinwunmi who by all accounts is working hard to change our football culture – we can already see with what he did with the U15s in friendlies in Morocco- win, lose or draw- played with young players- that’s vision, that’s looking at the long term because experiences like that for truly young players (real U15s) is a down payment on the future.

    Then this same visionary espoused view of reading a synergy from U13s all the way up to the senior National team with the NFF/Zenith Bank Future Eagles Championship.

    That is the foundation to future World Cup successes, not using over aged player to get short term gains and suffer for it in the future.

    Then this same visionary in barrister Akinwunmi also captured one of the most exciting players young players in Lateef Omidiji Jr, a player already in a position in Europe hat many senior players dream of, a player already touted by many scouts and club directors in Europe as one of the future of football.

    For all our criticisms of the NFF, the players, the coach, my people, we need to look at ourselves. This article might offend some, might bother some but if that is the price for starting a real conversation that could save us heartaches in the future then so be it.

    We are all Africans, it’s time to have a frank conversation with ourselves for the befit of our future, for the benefit of our children, for the benefit of a sport that we all love, for the benefit of our continents inhabitants.

    Football is more than a sport here on our continent, football is a religion here, it’s a release from all the pressures of living here, it’s an escape from our failed governments, it’s a stress reliever and dare I say- football is a part of our identity.

    We can talk about the poor officiating and bias and those are valid conversations but if we don’t get our house in order, we will continue the same cycle of failure, disappointment and talking points which his hire a coach, go to the Nations Cup, lose, get rid of hosts of players who came through our U17s overaged and were never taught basic foundation and principles and to be honest are not up to there with the best in the world technically or tactically.

    We fire a coach, hire another for the World Cup, qualify and do it all over again. Such has been our cycle as far back as I can remember.

    The money we’ve spent on this gallant set of super Eagles, imagine investing some in our youth football just 5% of it, the return will be immense.

    It means more international friendlies (even if it’s African countries and some European tournaments) for our U13s, U15s and U17s, it means potentially unearthing true aged players now that can be wildcards and intriguing possibilities for the World Cup in Qatar 2022.

    It means having a National U16 squad to be a synergy to our U17s so the pressure to be older, bigger, stronger and faster as criteria for the U17s is no longer there, it means hiring a coach for our U13s, U15s and U17s that is qualified, teach players technique, tactics and laying a foundation for the future.

    Investing 5% of the money we just spent on the Eagles on our youth means developing a playing style and template early and implanting it in players early so that when we get to the senior levels, there will be no arguments about formation or style, the world will see, identify and know Nigerian Football.

    It means buying a bone scan machine for our youth program and not just relying on ‘birth certificates and passports or in some cases size and what they look like so that we can truly cleanse our youth programs and start from the ground up.

    I know it isn’t an easy task in a country where we want results right away, where we need to win because we believe we are Brazil, well newsflash we are not, we are Nigeria with a lot of talent at home and abroad but a lot of cracks in or foundation.

    Brazilian kids, name any Brazilian star in Europe, all come through real academies in Brazil and nurtured through real academies and real coaches who know their stuff,.

    The coaches are in tune with world football, know what to teach, how to teach and who to teach by identifying true talent, not the coaches we have parading themselves around who cannot technically and tactically outwit European coaches.

    Let’s identify good coaches at grassroots, stop the north, south politics, find coaches that are passionate about coaching, accept that they are limited in knowledge, accept responsibility that it’s not their fault its ours, it’s the system we’ve created and accepted, send those coaches on training courses abroad, assign them to our U13s.

    Invest in them and send them overseas to train, earn UEFA licenses, have them be a part of our U13s, U15s and U17s who should now regularly be playing African, European, American, South American and Asian friendlies and tournaments (all these countries would love to play teams from Nigeria because of our dominance at youth levels) and eventually these coaches would be the future handlers of our youth and senior teams because of the training investment and international experience they’ll have.

    In doing so, it requires patience from the public, understanding that those countries we see succeeding on the global stage have a foundation, have a method, have a system and they don’t win U17 tournaments because that’s all a learning experience to prepare players for the future.

    Let us accept that we will lose games now but be setup to succeed in the future. Let’s dead the noise about having the youngest team in the World Cup so that we can truly start planning. We know, we don’t, Europeans know it too, so let’s stop deceiving ourselves because no one outside of Africa believes it either.

    Let’s look in the mirror because the fact is it’s not just Nigeria that use overaged players because that seems to be what you have to do to compete within Africa but when we get to the World Cup, it’s a different ball game.

    It is time my people to look inward, have a frank conversation about our youth, our passion, our future, our children, our football, let’s destroy and rebuild, we will never get anywhere in world football until that is done.

    Qatar 2022 is right around the corner, let’s get to work now!

    New Nff or old Nff pls start planning now!
    Without further delay siasia should be employed now but not only when there is problematic situations before bringing him.

    We trust siasia to deliver!

  • Edoman 3 years ago

    All we are saying, give us Siasia now. Please, join me everybody, all we are saying, give us Siasia now ooo.

  • Etim talks like a confuse man .pls can somebody tell me if is possible to park the bus and still hold the ball from opponent control? I said it with my neighbor who watched the game with me exactly 80th min I started complaining why GR is not bringing in substitutes to assist the tiring players and I keep shouting it so much so that pple around me were calming me down but instead I shouted for substitute the more.also wen u substitute at such dying moment of the game U tactitically slow down the pace of the game and in the process burn-out some precious seconds .have seen a lot of well respected coaches do this at dying moment of a game that is in there favor .i just can’t fanthom why GR did not do this to kill off the game at the dying moment but now substituted immediately after the argentine second goal,abi this man done collect bribe to sabotage his own team? Or what else can one call this attitude of GR towards the team he labors over for two years and plus months. The team actually needed GR to bring in The remaining two subs to assist them at that critical period of the match but he failed to come to their rescue wen they needed him most. What a shame … I think jay jay and siasia should be co-opted to take over the team .with jay jay technical football skill and knowledge and siasia tested and trusted technical and tactical know how NIG will definitely build from here a team that Wuld  surely improve upon the positives of this present team.

  • Rubbish @Ayo,siasia that fail to qualifier u for Nation cup.Siasia has no biz in super eagles,mind u,even late keshi,we won Afcon 2013 thru individual brillance.please stop blaming Rohr,