Football

WCQ: Nigeria expecting more difficult game against Cape Verde – Gernot Rohr

Amaju Melvin Pinnick, the President of the Nigeria Football Federation, has restated his backing for embattled head coach of the Super Eagles Gernot Rohr despite increasing calls for the immediate dismissal of the German.

Nigeria coach Gernot Rohr is anticipating a more difficult challenge from Cape Verde when both countries clash for their second 2022 Fifa World Cup qualifying fixture.

The three-time African champions are scheduled to leave Lagos for the island country a day before Tuesday’s evening encounter.

They started their qualification campaign for Qatar 2022 with a 2-0 win over Liberia on Friday, thanks to Kelechi Iheanacho’s first-half brace.

In his assessment, the German coach expressed satisfaction with the team’s performance at the Teslim Balogun Stadium after they kept their fourth clean sheet in a competitive game.

“Job has been done, we had to win our first game at home and we didn’t want to concede a goal also to show that now we are stable behind, so for four or five games now we didn’t concede a goal,” Rohr said after the match.

“We knew some of our players have to leave after the match and they had to do well before leaving because they cannot go to Cape Verde.

“We scored our two goals in the first half and we were calm and played our football but under difficult conditions because after the rain, the pitch was not easy to play for the two teams but we had to adapt under the circumstances.”

He continued: “Nine players are leaving so there will be another team. It’s not easy to beat another team in only two days and also to play on the synthetic pitch especially after playing on dry grass.

“Now we have to beat another team so it’s a challenge for the staff and the players. But we have to show our solidarity and for the players coming in now, who will be 20 going for the game.

“We will have to manage the situation and I believe our team will put in another good performance even knowing it will be a more difficult game than Liberia.”

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