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Three Super Eagles Stars Named In Russia 2018 Eliminated Best XI

Three Super Eagles Stars Named In Russia 2018 Eliminated Best XI

By Adeboye Amosu:

Super Eagles trio Keneth Omeruo, Wilfred Ndidi and Oghenekaro Etebo have been included in authoritative football analysis and statistics website Whoscored.com’s best rated XI of players to have been eliminated from the 2018 FIFA World Cup in Russia.


The Nigerian trio are joined on the list by notable names like Germany’s Mats Hummels and Jonas Hector, Serbia defender Branislav Ivanovic and Son Heung -Min of South Korea in the XI deployed in a 4-4-2 formation.

Centre-back Kenneth Omeruo featured in two of Nigeria’s three games in the competition. He provided the assist for Ahmed Musa’s second goal in the 2-0 win against Iceland

Zenith Ziva

Etebo, who signed for SkyBet Championship club Stoke City prior to the start of the competition made a huge impact for the Super Eagles in Russia.

The 22-year-old completed all but one of his 17 attempted dribbles and made a combined total of 14 tackles and interceptions.

Only Lionel Messi and Neymar completed more dribbles than Etebo during the first round of games.
Etebo’s midfield partner Wilfred Ndidi makes the cut with a hugely impressive showing for the Super Eagles.

The Leicester star made more tackles (15) and interceptions (12) than any other player in the group stages of the World Cup to once more showcase his quality to the watching world.

The Super Eagles were eliminated from Russia 2018 after a 2-1 defeat against Argentina in their final Group D game.

Cho Hyun-Woo – South Korea

Branislav Ivanovic – Serbia
Mats Hummels – Germany
Kenneth Omeruo – Nigeria
Jonas Hector – Germany

Andre Carrillo – Peru
Oghenekaro Etebo – Nigeria
Wilfred Ndidi – Nigeria
Salem Al Dawsari – Saudi Arabia

Son Heung-Min – South Korea
Wahbi Khazri – Tunisia

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  • Onyeagoro Johnson Chima 3 years ago

    Losers fc association!

  • Why is Ighalo not there?

  • Bomboy 3 years ago

    We should have been in the knockout stages if not for the technical ineptitude of our coach. He also lacks a winning mentality. He did not expect us to go far in the tournament and that is what happened.

    Itmis time for him to go!

    • Whisky 3 years ago

      apart from the changes that cost us the match in yhe last 5mins the super eagles lack quality in the midfied,defence and attack

    • Haymaker 3 years ago

      Totally agree. Rohr went to the world cup with a loser’s mentality and that robbed off on the players. Instead of trying to make a mark at this world cup, he kept talking nonsense about a young team that will be ready for 2022. Try that in a European or South American country and you get the sack even before the world cup is over! It appears NFF aided and abetted this shambolic display by not giving Rohr a mandate for this world cup.

    • stanley 3 years ago

      Argentina don die. 
      Oti jabo. 
      Oti ku. 
      Shameless Messi.

  • Abdulrazak 3 years ago

    Are people still moaning about our loss? It’s over. In life, You fall, get up and keep going.

  • Sunnyb 3 years ago

    Stupid Iheanacho can u see real 19 yr old destroying Argentina.

    • Uncle Sunny, take a chill pill, please; I know how you feel.
      Iheanacho had an off day against Argentina. He failed to rise up to such a big occassion but this world cup experience will help him.
      Although I feel that the whole of our players are average players (all of them) some of them have a lot of promise and I have no doubt that they will improve.
      Ndidi, Iheanacho, Etebo, Iwobi, Ebuehi and Uzoho surely have bright futures ahead of them.
      Having said that, will any of them ever rise to world class status? I have my doubts.

  • Edoman 3 years ago

    There is no way Nigeria would v defeated France today from what l have observe in their match going on right now. If only our manager had lived up to the standard required at that level. Rohr has really let us down as a people.

    France 4 Argentina 3

    • Edoman, in football, anything can happen. The Super Eagles lost to Argentina by 1 goal difference, Argentina lost to France by 1 goal difference.
      What our players lack in quality, they more than make up for in grit, determination, focus, drive and stubbornness.
      This Super Eagles team could have gone far if coach Rohr and his advisers had been more savvy.
      1:1 with 5 more minutes, we needed players who could hold up play, and try to make the Argentines play to our terms.
      Ogu and Ebuehi would not have been bad substitutions for Etebo and Idowu. There was no need for 2 up front at that point as we needed to protect the existing scoreline and not to score any more goals.
      All that is in the past and we need to march on.
      From the perspective of African football, we have one of (if not) the best football team. We these and other players, we can win back to back African Cup of Nations.
      Even our worst players are better that the best players of many African countries.
      I will pick Odion Ighalo over Abubakar (Cameroon), Alex Ngonga (Zambia), Tokelor Ranti (South Africa) or Frank Acheampong (Ghana), any day any time.
      However, when it comes to the global stage, our players have a long, long way to go. I am yet to be convinced that we will have a formidable team for 2022 world cup.

  • AlatiseO 3 years ago

    For those defending Gernot Rohr not be sacked, if he stays he will make the same mistake. His decision making is near criminal. He lacks good judgement. You had about 5 friendly games and you still weren’t able strenghths and weaknesses of your team. He played for almost all the friendlies and didn’t score but still using him. Why he didn’t use Iwobi in striker position is beyond my understanding. I can go on and on. If NFF keeps him, they will be as incompetent as him.

  • “I would rather be the worst winner than the best loser”

    A Loser is an ugly orphan, there is nothing good about losing let alone “best”

    Don’t be fooled.

    I have not come to terms that coach Rohr reduced himself to a bagger. That admission, for all intents and purposes, will earn you an automatic sack, in any western world.

    Again did you guys notice that, some of the old players are using Rohr’s exact phrase, this our “young team” will improve.
    The real young ones like Ebuehi and Iwobi are mad and angry about their exit.

    I will rather fight in an army of sheep commanded by a lion, than in an army of lions commanded by a sheep.

    Courage, self belief and ambition is as contagious as infriority complex,low self estim and lack of ambition.

    ROHR simply poured cold water on the ambition and self confidence if this team.

    And the crap about team unity is absolute nonsense. The unity that sacrifices self expression? The unity that allows Moses waste our set pieces, choose the position to play without anybody objecting?
    The unity that allows IGHALO play all games at the expense of better players?
    The unity that allows Mikel dictate where and how long he plays?
    That was actually MAFIASO, a Mafia and not unity.

    #Arsen Wenger we need
    #Wenger for Super Eagles.

    • thank you so much for this. My view exactly. #sackGernotRohr

      I hope NFF is seeing this. How can we get this to Amaju Pinnick?
      Nigerians are claiming a defeatist attitude. Argentina is not good enough to beat Nigeria or any team. Argentina was coached by Messi and beat Gernot Rohr.

      Is that team truly young? He didn’t use the full complement of the squad. Germans believe that Nigeria is overrated. He said it in this interview (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vT1Vi2yjrLE).

      Gernot Rohr should be removed for a better coach, Herve Renard or Arsene Wenger

  • Abdulrazak 3 years ago

    Germany as world champions not only got knocked out in the first round for the first time ever but finished bottom of the log. So, does that make Joachin Loew a bad coach now? In an interview with Blid today, Berti Vogts, who was in the West Germany team that won the world cup in 1974, said before any decisions are made by the German football association, he would advise that they consult with, Jurgen Kloop, Gernot Rohr and Wagner for inputs as to the way forward after the humiliation in Russia. 
    Yes o! Our own Gernot Rohr being asked for advice on future of the German national team!
    Painful as our loss to Argentina is, we should learn from the experience, make changes for better performance in future competitions.

    • If Rohr is consulted by Germany for an opinion, does that exonerate him from being a failure as the head coach of Nigeria in Russia? Can’t you make your own judgement? I am sick of this attitude of accepting everything put forward by white men without critical assessment on your own. A coach who could not make changes and fortify his defence when it was 5 minutes to the end of the game is not good enough. Look at what France did against Argentina. A coach who would play a below par player like Ighalo at the expense of Iwobi or Simmy is not good enough. Rohr would drag Nigerian soccer back. Let’s be realistic.

  • Nigeria tried but we needed luck /prayers and the match with Argentina was not fair.Secondly they shouldn’t have been careless. They needed confidence. Watch all Argentina matches ,they did play much but they where confident,careful and utilized opportunity

  • Sunnyb 3 years ago

    Sura the Tailor,my brother u right, but I’m willing to bet anybody regarding Iheanacho the man would never improve, u can’t give what u don’t have, watch Iwobi and Ebuehi in few years those two ballers would superstars, Iheanacho, Shehu, indidi, Omeruo would playing in Turkey or China.So pls bro forget about off day or unfit, Iheanacho is just an average player period.

    • Ayphillydegreat 3 years ago

      Are you not the same person who said both Iwobi and Iheanacho are average players? Now you’re singing Iwobi who only played cameo roles at the WorldCup to high heavens. LMAO! Fair weather fan of the highest order

  • Abdulrazak 3 years ago

    Ndidi is rated highly by many as a fantastic player and did very well in the three matches the Super Eagles played in Russia. While not knocking Iwobi, he did not set the world on fire with his performance against Croatia. As for Ebuehi, if the penalty he gave away against Iceland had been converted and Super Eagles had gone on to lose the match, i wonder if people would still have hailed him.

  • Edoman 3 years ago

    l am sincerely praying Leicester wont off load Iheanacho in the very near future. He seemed to have no nowhere to go than go downward now. Rohr failure to start Iwobi against Argentina was the height of his mismanagement of the Nigeria National Team. Under Rohr, there is no bright future for Nigeria Team as a matter of fact, Rohr may well quite the job on his own, knowing his has reached his end at 65. His pride and self confidence is badly damaged and as is now fully exposed for the whole World to see how shallow he really is. Edo adage says “We have nothing to live for until we have something to die for” At 65, Rohr has nothing to die for in Nigeria.

  • Sunnyb 3 years ago

    Ayphillydrgreat, people like you are the main reason Nigeria lost, its ironic you disappeared since we lost to Argentina, I guess all ur superstars and world class coach failed you. coming here singing praises of Rohr and his average players, we warned u before the World Cup, guess what bro,I was proven right. Go back and check all post I said Rohr was a clueless coach, while ur likes called him a first class coach, history would be forever on my side. As for Iwobi go and read my post again, I said in five years.Bro no disrespect intended.

    • Ayphillydegreat 3 years ago

      People like you are the reason why Nigerian football was stagnant for over a decade before Rohr came in and gave the SuperEagles another identify. The world over are raving about the dynamism of the SuperEagles for the first time since 94. Meanwhile No where did I ever called Rohr a world-class coach. I only called him a good enough coach for the SuperEagles. And I never dissappeared since we lost to Argentina. I’ve always been here, I commented about how they robbed us even though Ighalo missed two good chances. You can go back and check my post. I’ve always said whatever happens in Russia we will take it as an experience for a young team. You’re the one who is looking for a quick fix where there is none.

      • Paschal 3 years ago

        AY, it is very evident that you and DEO are class ahead of many forumites here in football knowledge. You are not the type who watches football with your heart, you do so with your head. Am impressed. Funny that people are calling for the sack of a man who they were praising to high heavens less than 200 days ago for humiliating Cameroon. For me, I will say, keep the whole team. This team still comes closest to our 94 team by all standards. By Gods grace we shall win the next afcon, win 2021 afcon and shock the whole world at the 2022 world cup. I have no doubt about it. Let haters of Rohr say all their worst. They only watch football with their hearts not their heads so am not surprised.

  • prince 3 years ago

    Rohr mess up, what was Iwobi doing on the bench, he is far better than Iheanacho. Iwobi will have help the team

  • why NFF must sack Rohr.
    Rohr is a saboteur. Had the opportunity to put in John Ogu on the 80mins mark.
    To keep the draw until the end but didn’t act

  • Going into the 2018 World Cup, I remember posting that perhaps the strongest department for the Super Eagles was the central/defensive midfield.

    So, no surprise (to me) to see Etebo and Ndidi’s name in the article above.

    I am sure that Mikel’s name would feature on the bench of the fantasy squad above if it had a reserve.

    Quite why Coach Rohr saturated his world cup squad with so many midfielders and defenders – seven and eight respectively – and then failed to maximise their presence against Argentina in the dying minutes, will remain a mystery to me.

    What is clear is that Nigeria failed to build on the progress made at the 2014 by falling at the group stages this time around despite enormous support and resources made available to Gernot Rohr by the NFF.

    I will still take some positives from this world cup which are:

    – Super Eagles remain hard to beat for any side.
    – We have a strong side to compete in Africa (so long as Rohr or whoever the coach is selects squads wisely).
    – Some of our players who weren’t at this world cup are still relevant and can deliver in future eg Ezekiel, Isaac Success, Aminu Umar etc.
    – Most importantly, in the eyes of neutral observers and pundits, Nigeria gave a decent account of themselves at this world cup.

    There will be 2 African Cup of Nations tournament between now and the next World Cup.

    I implore the NFF to see these AFCON tournaments as vital resources to help Nigeria qualify for and make progress in the 2022 FIFA world cup.

  • My advice is, Nff should bring Siasia to assist Rohr. Mr. Salisu may have lack positive advice to give Mr. Rohr. Rohr is not too bad as we think. Remember he qualifies us in a very difficult group to this world cup. Let us give him a second chance and see how he will perform in the nations cup. Our team which he build are not up to 2 years. U can’t compare our team with croatia and Argentina that they hav played together 4 more than four years.. Rohr only time and correct his mistake.

    • I think Rohr should go after a well planned and mutually agreed smooth transition process – similar to how Manuel Pellegrini departed Man City on the 30th of June 2016.

      Make no mistake, I am not a fan of Rohr!

      Having said that, I propose that the NFF gives him a 2 year contract to run until 2020 so he (and us Nigerians) can reap the benefits of the positive aspects of the job he has done thus far.

      What this appointment will bring will be immediate stability and continuity to the Super Eagles which is much needed at this time.

      In those two years, the NFF should then either 1) work extremely hard to groom a local coach (with world class exposure, training and development support) that will take over from Rohr or 2) embark on an extensive search and rigorous recruitment exercise and drive to put a place a credible coaching team that would take over from Rohr after the expiration of his contract.

      We can then thank Rohr for all his contributions and (finally) bid him farewell!

  • @Cj So after u sack him now u will bring another coach and then u will be expecting an instant miracle. Groom d local coach u said, do u think a local coach can be groom in so short time and become world class or u want to cause another doom for our football. Honestly Nigeria football is on the right track now and whoever succeed Rohr after his time will have a good time coaching the team.

  • Nigerians! What a country. I weep. An ode to my country. Gernot rohr is the best thing that has happened to nigeria soccer since the demise of Stephen Kesho. He took a team of low confidence, broken and shattered management, and brought u this far, all u ask for is his head. We lack continuity, patience and dogged meticulous planning for d future and that is y we continue to fail as a country. All we ask is quick fix. Has anybody paused to ask y after keshi won d nations cup, we could not sustain the tempo, of course d answer is apparent in many answers by fellow pundits. I do not expect Mr rohr to remain or be sacked for all his mistakes at the world, but I expect for once true football fans and the supereagles as well as the NFF will for once allow continuity be the decider of the future of our soccer. There is a legacy already, there is a blue print and there is an ideology that every member of that squad has imbibed and internalised, y change d manager and all of that…to start from 2005 again to rebuild. Oh my country. When he qualified u for the world u all sang his praise to the heavens, things have gone awry and he is suddenly a bad coach. But he is human!

  • Ayphillydegreat 3 years ago

    Chile won two straight Copa America, but they’re watching the WorldCup from the comfort of their couch. Italy have won the WorldCup four times, but they couldn’t qualify ahead of Sweden. Holland have reached the WorldCup final three times yet they couldn’t make it to Russia.

    We have a potentially vibrant team that are poised for greatness if we continue to groom them in the right direction. Some will be removed and new talents will emerge over the next three years. The SuperEagles announced to the world that we are gradually reclaiming our lost glory. SuperEagles made Argentina suffer. It was just by measure of luck that this team could’ve defeated the Albicelestes.

    There are plenty of talents on the horizon. Kelechi Nwakali may be joining Porto this coming season. Onyekuru, Simon returning, Success Isaac if he can get back to form, Awoniyi, Osimhen and others. Ajagun, Azubuike Okechukwu, Musa Muhammed et all. It all takes proper planning starting from the next two AFCON and the qualifiers for the next WorldCup. I believe this team will only continue to get better with continuity. #FLY LIKE AN EAGLE INTO THE FUTURE.

  • Cherechi 3 years ago

    Pls sack Rohr and let me invite my dead ancestors to take over the reins of the Super Eagles. At times we reason from our anus. Internet coaches

  • Akinlabi, the world of football coaching can behard, thankless and brutal!

    They earn enormous wages and are brought in to do a job. Do the job well you are a hero; fail and you are the ultimate villain.

    Coach Claudio Ranieri walked on water for Leicester City in one but was fed to the sharks the next season following a string of poor results.

    Late (great) Coach Amodu Shuibu was given a list of 3 targets to achieve 1) qualify Nigeria for the African Cup of Nations, 2) Reach the semi-finals in the AFCON, 3) Qualify Nigeria for the World Cup. The poor guy hit all 3 targets in style yet fans (yes fans!!) and other stakeholders put pressure on the NFA to have him sacked – he would never lead his own country to the world cup he qualified for without losing a single match.

    The immortal coach Keshi equalled the achievements of the greatest class of the Super Eagles in the history of Nigerian football (SE class of 1992 to 94) by 1) winning AFCON (1994;2013), qualifying for the world cup and reaching the second round (1994 ; 2014). He also qualified Nigeria for CHAN for the first time in our illustrious history while reaching the semi-finals with some beautiful football and breathtaking Lazarus-type results (comimg from the dead to beat Morocco 4:3).

    Yet, till this day, all some fans remember Keshi for is alleged bribery and poor team selection for a man who is one of just less than 5 people in Africa to both captain, as a player, and lead, as a coach, his own country to African Cup of Nations success.

    The life of a coach can be thankless!

    The manner of our exit from this world cup (not the exit itself) has left a sour taste in the mouths of many fans who supported Rohr going into the tournament.

    The nature of critisms he has faced from many in this forum is not peculiar to him as a coach.

    For all Arsene Wenger did for Arsenal over the years, moanings and criticisms from fans partly led to his enforced departure.

    Football means a lot to us Nigerians and sadly for Rohr, he failed to build on the success of a blemishless world cup qualification campaign and many (loyal and passionate) fans find that difficult to get over very quickly.

  • Abdulrazak 3 years ago

    Oscars Tabarez took over the reins as Uruguay head coach in 2005 and they failed to qualify for the 2006 world cup in Germany losing to Australia(yes Australia) on penalties in the playoffs. 12 years on and he has taken them to three world cups, including that infamous win over Ghana in 2010. He is 71 years old and walk with the aid of crutches.
    Joachim Loew has been with Germany now for 12 years and despite their unceremonious and unprecedented exit at Russia 2018, no one is calling for his sack!
    In 1989, a certain Clemens Westerhof took over as Technical Adviser of the then Golden Eagles. His first match was a crucial 1990 world cup qualifier in Yaounde and we lost 0-1 to miss out on Italia ’90. At the Afcon in 1990, in Algiers, Golden Eagles lost their opening match scandalously 1-5 to the host nation, Algeria. Westerhof was called all manner of names and described in unpleasant adjectives. But for the support of the then Chief of General Staff, Augustus Aigkhomu, he would have been sacked. They got to the finals losing 0-1 to Algeria. Four years on, Clemens Westerhof not only qualified Nigeria to her first ever world cup, but won Afcon ’94 in Tunisia and shot the Super Eagles up the FIFA ranking to 5th position.
    Gernot Rohr, has been in charge for two years, qualified us stress free for the world cup from a difficult group, but because he lost to two time world chsmpions, Argentina( not Afghanistan o!), all a sudden he is now a bad coach.
    There are two sets of critics of the Super Eagles. On one hand are those who genuinely want improvement in the team while others just want to vent their anger and frustrations on the team for their own inadequacies, failures and low self esteem.

  • @Abdulrazak, the period you alluded to, the Super Eagles were called the Green Eagles, not Golden Eagles (in fact, I think the changed from Green to Super Eagles after the 1988 Afcon loss to Cameroon). I only know of the Golden Eaglets who rightly earned that name after their triumph at the 1985 u-16 World Cup.
    Legendary midfielder Michael Ballack and other vocal stakeholders of German football have come out to criticise their Football Association for handing Joachim Low a new contract ahead of the world cup – a decision they call stupid.
    German fans like us are hurting at the moment and many are asking for the way forward.
    Either in world or club football, the general consensus is that coaches having long reigns (like Joachim Low, Oscars Tabarez, Alex Fergurson or Arsene Wenger) are more of the exceptions than the norm.
    Reigns of Coaches like Mourinho, Pep Guardiola or Clements Westerhof are more of the norm (5 year reign or less).
    The grace period given to coaches to deliver is short and getting shorter.
    If you can’t deliver as a coach, then do the honourable and step aside for those who can.
    Because you expect or even demand high level performance from your team and feel frustrated when this does happen does not necessarily mean you are venting out frustration because of personal inadequacy.

  • Abdulrazak 3 years ago

    @Ash Williams,  correction taken. They certainly were Green Eagles but we’re subsequently nick named Super Eagles by Augustus Aigkhomu on the back of their 0-1 loss to Algeria at the final of Algiers ’90.
    Demanding better and higher level performance is all well, but if one is going to proffer solutions to imaginary or real problems i, think it should be with with superior arguments and sound reasoning.
    There is no where in your post where you used uncouth language in making your point. That shows maturity and intelligence.