INTERVIEW – Rohr: Eagles Ready For Big Cameroon Test; I Care For Our AFCON 2019 Success, Not Sack Rumours

INTERVIEW – Rohr: Eagles Ready For Big Cameroon Test; I Care For Our AFCON 2019 Success, Not Sack Rumours

Super Eagles head coach Gernot Rohr addressed the media on Friday ahead of his team’s AFCON 2019 Round Of 16 encounter against the Indomitable Lions of Cameroon on Saturday July 6 at the Alexandria Stadium. ADEBOYE AMOSU was there for Completesports.com. ..

This is definitely the biggest test for the Super Eagles in this competition (playing against Cameroon). How ready are you and the players?

Yes it is. Cameroon is one of the best teams in this competition. We have prepared well for this game. Physically and mentally, we are ready for the game.

Now it us up to the players to prove that what happened against Madagascar in the last game was just an accident. It is another opportunity for them to show they are ready to win this competition. I want to see the players have fun on the pitch too.

Now, a new tournament is beginning with the Round of 16 matches. There is little room for mistakes now. We have to fight well to progress.

Your team started the competition with two wins against Burundi and Guinea, but shockingly lost the third against Madagascar. What do you think went wrong in that game?

Madagascar (match) was special because we had already qualified and maybe it affected the players subconsciously. We have to forgive the players for the individual mistakes. Even if when we told them to give their all, within them they might believe we have already qualified, why bother again?

We have to forgive the players that made mistakes. Balogun made mistakes against Madagascar. Kenneth did the same in our friendly against Senegal. Everything is in the past now.
We are all together. We score goals together, and win together as well..

What update do you have on the injury front?

Jamilu Collins is ready to play now but I can’t say say if he will start against Cameroon or be on the bench. Our captain, John Mikel Obi is injured and will not play tomorrow. Shehu Abdullahi is still recovering and is out too.


Super Eagles coach, Rohr, arriving the the Alexandria Stadium for pre-match press conference ahead Cameroon clash. Pix by: Ganiyu Yusuf

How much have you worked to resolve the Super Eagles’ scoring problems, having hit the back of the net only twice in this competition?

Yeah, it is true we have scored twice, but we have a good defence and good attackers. who can make a difference.

Everyone took penalties in training yesterday. You have to work on all situations. We have put our physical problems behind us and totally ready for this game.

Having played all your matches in Alexandria since the start of the competition, do you feel like the city is the Super Eagles’ home now?

We feel at home in Alexandria after playing all our (previous) games here. Our regret will be to leave here, but I hope we win tomorrow so that we can continue in Cairo. We have enjoyed our stay at the Palestine hotel.

The training ground here too is good. I told our kit man to give t-shirts to the groundsmen to show appreciation for the good job they have done.

What are your thoughts on the Cameroon team?

We have seen Cameroon play with different formations. It is difficult to say how they will play against us. We will play our football and show our strengths as well.

There are reports indicating that you will be sacked no matter what happened to the Super Eagles in this competition. What’s is your response to that?

I have heard rumours concerning my job, but I don’t pay attention to them. I hope to do well here and then after this tournament, I’ll address my future.

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  • Aauxtyne 5 years ago

    Be focused for this game against the Lions and win it, and possibly the tournament. That will be great!

  • _Match Preview_

    The Super Eagles of Nigeria go to tomorrow’s clash against Cameroon knowing fully well that they are on a redemption mission after their dismal display against Madagascar in their last group match.

    Whereas against Madagascar there was a second chance, against Cameroon tomorrow, there are no second chances – it is win or burst!

    Ahead of this clash, I shed the spotlight on players who could make all the difference tomorrow to secure the sort of outcome that will send the Super Eagles on a course of being actually “Super” again.


    Akpeyi (No margin for error): It is almost a forgone conclusion that the South African based net minder will be in goal tomorrow. If that is the case, Akpeyi’s performance will have to be totally bereft of the sort of errors that have blighted his national team career. An error tomorrow might be an error too far…

    Omeruo (Rock of Gibraltar): The new stalwart of Nigeria’s defence will have to continue from where he stopped (defensively and offensively) for Nigeria to have any chance of getting anything out of this encounter. Omeruo might yet emerge as one of the star defenders of the tournament.

    Wilfred Ndidi (Smooth operator): With the way Ndidi goes about his tackles and interceptions, one would expect him to be a magnet for yellow and red cards. But his tackles are often too timely, neat and effective. All his qualities will need to be brought to bear to tame the rampaging lions tomorrow.

    Iwobi (Neither hot not cold): If there is one thing Iwobi is consistent at, it is ‘inconsistency’. A potential world class player on his day but he doesn’t do it anywhere near the level of consistency required. If Iwobi finds his touches, range of passes and shooting boots, then we could see goals from the Arsenal man (directly or via assists).

    Moses Simon (Solid if unspectacular): Owing to the physical nature of the Cameroonians, I contend that Moses needs to start tomorrow. The defensive qualities and ability to pierce defences with mazy runs could prove pivotal. Also, maturity and experience set him apart from Chukueze (at this stage).

    Ighalo (Arrow head): Ighalo shone like a million stars in World Cup qualifiers. With the highest goal scorers in this Afcon all having just 2 goals each, Ighalo will still still fancy his chances of being the highest goal scorer in this tournament. We all saw how that self-centred ambition limited his effectiveness in previous matches (going for goal when a pass would have sufficed). Should Ighalo aim to create chances as well as score goals himself, the prospect of a victory will be high for the Super Eagles

    • Bomboy 5 years ago

      You didn’t tell is your choice to partner with Omeruo in the defence, Ekong or Balogun or do you prefer a three man defence in a 3-5-2 formation?

      I know you are not the coach, but who knows? Mr. Rohr may be reading this…

      • I actually suggested 3-5-2 formation the other day with Ekong and Awaziem partnering Omeruo.

    • Destiny 5 years ago

      You don’t know what you are saying Mr deo moses simon does not have anything to offer as a winger presently in the team he proved that in his last match against guinea, cause against guinea he was totally poor except only the assist to omeruo

      Moses simon does not offer anything going forward so henry onyekuru or chukwueze should play ahead of moses simon, but I don’t know if this madman that called himself rohr will start Henry onyekuru

  • Oluwa 5 years ago

    Play iwobi at left forward and try chukwueze as behind striker. chukwueze can pick the ball from defence and drive forward… we will not lack creativity if iwobi operate from left wing… and onyekuru right.

    • Greenturf 5 years ago

      The coach tried that against Guinea and the team suffered.Chukwueze’s time would come I don’t think he is ready now

    • About this coach the plan for pen?

  • Abi this coach the plan for pen?

  • Walking 5 years ago

    Don’t start Awaziem, he is not clinical, he never made one successive across.

    Etebo does what he is capable of, pass and change direction he won’t.
    Chukweze should play a free role moving from the flanks to the middle.

    Collins and Aina must play.

    Omeruo and Ekong must be on their toes, a good match against Cameroon will help against successive matches ahead…

  • Ololo 5 years ago

    It’s obvious 4-2-1-3 formation is not working for the eagles.. It’s time to change to 3 5 2 .. But I honestly wasn’t happy reading rohn being awear of the sack story.. He has done well for this nation.

  • Edoman 5 years ago

    Yes, he might have done well before now, can the Nation continues to pay him so generously while he is not improving his performances to satisfy his employers. Who among us, will agree to retain this coach if Cameroon sends Nigeria home tomorrow.

  • Ndubuisi 5 years ago

    Rohr and super Eagles over to you, Benin has shown the way playing 10 against 12 (Referee inclusive) They played their skin out and God of soccer if any did justice to their course. Today’s match reminds me the match between Ghana vs Burkinafo in 2003. The referee was determined to see ghana win the match and when he could not succeed he manufactured a red card against their star player Pretoipa just to pave way for a Ghana win but he failed and justice was done in penalty shootout. As we go into the match tomorrow Eagles should be ready for the worst even from bias officials. The match promises to be trilling but the most focus team will come up top. Call it over confidence you may not be mistaken Eagles will win. What we need is to work hard and score early goal and Cameroon would be beaten. One of the favorite who played beautiful football dominated their group with 9 points were beaten by a lesser quality team Benin. By the way Benin has not won any afcon match but they are in quarter finals. Is Morocco coach a bad coach? Why has the mountain fallen? Football is unpredictable and Moroccans would have preferred to loose 4-0 in their last match than winning inconsequential match and lost when it mattered most. More surprises in this round of 16. Congratulations to Benin and congrats to eagles in advance.

  • Pompei 5 years ago

    Winning the important matches is what counts. I would rather lose to Madagascar or even Tahiti in a dead rubber, and go ahead and win all the remaining matches and the trophy, than beat Madagascar 10 nil and get bundled out in the second round! Can you imagine how confused the Moroccans must be right now? It’s football. If the Super Eagles get it right, nobody will remember Madagascar again. Let’s see how it shakes down tomorrow.

  • Destiny 5 years ago

    The interviewer asked Mr rohr that


    And Mr rohr said that


    You see!! this clueless and empty head bastard who call’s himself our coach is planning to win the match through penalties

    GOSH! Mr rohr you are a madman and to me if you win this afcon2019 or not you are Getting sacked

    I wish Nigeria wins Cameroon and win the cup though

    but mr rohr you are one of the annoying,clueless, tactless and most worst coach I’ve ever seen

    • Tayo Fadayomi 5 years ago

      I don’t know which part of the country (Nigeria) that Destiny comes from. Nigerians do respect elders. Stop being disrespectful to Rohr by referring to him as a madman and a bastard all in the name of football. I am sure that Rohr is old enough to be your father. We must show the world that we are dissent people in the way we talk to our elders.

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