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‘Lazy, impatient coaches reason Rohr has only one home-based goalkeeper’

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Nigerian Coach Gernot Rohr looks during the African Cup of Nations qualification match between Nigeria and Libya in Uyo, Akwa Ibom State in southern Nigeria, on October 13, 2018. (Photo by PIUS UTOMI EKPEI / AFP)


Former Internationals, Joseph Erico and Joseph Dosu, have faulted Super Eagles Coach, Gernot Rohr’s belief there are no good goalkeepers in the Nigerian league, saying the national team coaches have not just taken out time to scout for good net minders.

They also fault Rohr’s recent statement that he has now found solution to Super Eagles’ goalkeeping problems in two Europe-based players, saying that laziness and impatience on the part of the coaching crew have ensured that the abundant goalkeeping talents in the country were still undiscovered.

An irritated Erico said the Super Eagles’ coaching crew has been too lazy to go round the country to watch league matches and scout for reliable goaltenders, adding, “As far as I am concerned and I will say it over and over again, there are over one million and one very good goalkeepers in the country. What the coaches needed to have done was to go round the states and watch the league matches, fish them out, clean them up, polish them and invest time on them.

“I will never be in support of the argument that we don’t have good goalkeepers in this country. You can only get good goalkeepers when you build their confidence, give them the right training, and the right frame of mind.” Erico, a former national team goalkeeper, who also trained Super Eagles’ goalkeepers, said all the great goalkeepers that kept for the country were all discovered from the local league.

“After all the good goalkeepers like Peter Rufai, Joseph Dosu, Ike Shorunmu, Vincent Enyeama were discovered on the streets, and from there they made their mark in the local leagues. They didn’t fall from heaven. “That we don’t have good goalkeepers is due to the coaches’ mentality. I think it is because they are too lazy to go round to watch league matches,” said the former Julius Berger’s coach.

Agreeing with his former coach, Dosu Joseph wondered if the country ever had a goalkeeping problem, saying that not sticking to one particular player in the recent past has been the bane of the Eagles.

“I don’t think we ever had problems in the goalkeeping area. All we needed was just continuity rather than changing them each time they made an error. Goalkeepers are bound to make mistakes and that is why the goal post is very difficult and dangerous.

“Each time a team concedes a goal, the next thing that people do is to look at the goalkeepers and not the defenders to know who is at fault. In our case, we have three goalkeepers and each time one makes a mistake, we change them. This is because the coach has refused to believe in any particular player.

“We’ve seen great goalkeepers in Germany’s Manuel Neuer, Spain’s David De Gea committing serious errors and yet they were not dropped because their coaches know they can do better. But all we do here is to change them at will and make them look as if they were not good at all. And now we have started searching for goalkeepers around the world, which is not a good omen for the good ones that have not been given the opportunity,” he stated.


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