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Rojo: Facing Nigeria Again At World Cup Will Be Tough

Rojo: Facing Nigeria Again At World Cup Will Be Tough

By James Agberebi:

Manchester United defender Marcos Rojo has stated that Argentina being drawn with Nigeria again in the same group that also has Croatia and debutant Iceland at the World Cup means it will be tough for the Albiceleste.

Argentina and Nigeria will square off for the fifth time at the World Cup since they first met at the 1994 edition in USA.

In their last four meetings Argentina have managed to come out tops (USA 1994: 2-1, Korea/Japan 2002: 1-0, South Africa 2010: 1-0 and Brazil 2014: 3-2).

“We’ve got Nigeria again!” Rojo told Inside United published on the Manchester United website.

“I think it’s three or four times now we’ve been drawn with Nigeria and it will be a difficult group.

“Croatia and Iceland are in there too. Hopefully, Lionel Messi will be in form and can do something for us,” the tough-tackling defender who scored Argentina’s third goal in their 3-2 win against Nigeria at the 2014 World Cup said.

Rojo went on to state that they will do everything possible to avenge losing the 2014 World Cup by becoming champions in Russia.

“Obviously, it’s a really important thing and a big deal for any Argentinian to wear that shirt,” he added.

“We really feel the shirt a lot and we defend our colours.

“We give everything when we are wearing it and we want payback for the way things happened at the last World Cup. We will do everything to give our fans the possibility to celebrate winning the trophy again.”

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  • With about 11 days to go to Nigeria’s first match at the 2018 Fifa World Cup, the 10 points I collated below capture the mood of Super Eagles’ fans :

    1) Opinions remain divided amongst fans as to whether Francis Uzoho should man the post in Russia. It does appear though that more fans are in favour for him to be number one. Other fans will like Ezenwa whilst those who will like Akpeyi appear resigned to the fact that they will not have their wish.

    2) A high number of fans question Joel Obi’s inclusion to the last 23 whilst his most ardent supporters believe his time has come and that he will deliver in the tournament proper final.

    3) There is unanimous consensus among a vast number of fans that the best formations for Nigeria going to the world cup are 5-3-2 (when defending) and 3-5-2 when attacking.

    4) Almost all fans have lost faith in Onazi’s ability to regain his form in enough time to be a force to be reckoned with in Nigeria’s midfield.

    5) There are quiet murmurs in some corners that Ighalo should be replaced by Simmy as the automatic starting number 9.

    6) Whereas some fans believe that the current 23 players are the very best for Nigeria at this moment, others believe that sentimental considerations still played a part in the squad selection.

    7) Overwhelming number of fans appear optimistic about the chances of the Super Eagles. Having said that, there are those waiting to laugh out loud after the group stages to say the words: “I told you so”. They have no faith in Gernot Rorh and his boys.

    8) All fans do not want the slow start that characterised Nigeria’s first half performance against England.

    9) Some fans are still rueing the late discovery of Nwakali as they believe that he would have been a valuable addition to the squad.

    10) As much as all fans are true Super Eagles supporters, their differing views on player selection makes some of them bitter rivals.

  • Bomboy 3 years ago

    @ Deo, your first point is the most critical. Uzoho is highly talented but i am of the opinion that he is too inexperienced. He plays in a lower league in Spain and has conceded 5 goals in our last 3 games, made school boy blunders (two of them were overlooked by the ref, but the third one cost us a goal), his pullouts are poor, etc. I hope he surprises me at the World Cup. I will be very glad to be proved wrong.

    • Brother Bomboy, that is the beauty of being a Super Eagles fan. Though divided in opinion, yet, united in our desire to see our darling Super Eagles do well.

      It is well documented that I have my concerns about Uzoho, yet I pray he does well so we all can be proud.

      I am not ashamed to say that I am in the Akpeyi camp.

      But Akpeyi, Uzoho, Ezenwa, whoever it is, I pray the person does well.

      God bless us all.

  • Onyeagoro Johnson Chima 3 years ago

    If the defence line is not doing well,there is nothing the goalkeeper can do as he will be exposed to risk.They will make it out of the group and from there anything can happen 

  • Onyeagoro Johnson Chima 3 years ago

    If the defence line is not doing well,there is nothing the goalkeeper can do as he will be exposed to risk.They will make it out of the group and from there anything can happen. Uzoh o is our number one in the keep 

  • Kweli 3 years ago

    I am rooting for Nigeria along with other African countries. My concern has been our sub-par set piece taking and defending. No signs of improvement in this department. Remember the second and third Argentina goals in 2014 were from set piece play, one scored by Messi and the other from a corner. The first goal in the recent friendly with Argentina, same thing. As was the first goal by England from a header. My other concern is sub-standard goal keeping could prove costly, God forbid. Third, if the S/E can press high as they did in the second half of the friendly against England, that approach can reap dividends. By doing that, you force errors from opposition defenders and can pounce on those errors. That also means you can generate set piece plays that can cause problems to your rivals. Good luck bros!

  • There has been talks of Victor Moses “intimidating” Ihaenacho in taking free kicks. I think the criticism is too harsh.