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No special plan to stop Messi, says Rohr

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Super Eagles Coach, Gernot Rohr has stated that he has no special plan to stop Argentina superstar Lionel Messi at the World Cup.

The Super Eagles are grouped alongside La Albiceleste in Group D of the World Cup.

Ahead of the fixture against the South American side, Rohr stated in an interview with Soccer Laduma that there will not be an extra focus on the Argentine talisman.

“At this stage, there is no special plan. We don’t even know whether he will play. Of course, we all know him and we know of his quality. But we also played against some really good players in our qualification and were able to deal with them.”

“We had Riyad Mahrez at Algeria, we played against Sadio Mane and Senegal in a friendly. We know how to organise our defence against top quality players. What I can tell you now already is that there will be no man-marking of Messi,” Rohr continued.

“We did this in the old days, even myself, but it’s not used too often these days. We will deal with Messi or any big player as a collective. But often you won’t be able to keep top players quiet over the whole 90 minutes.”

Messi missed the friendly between both sides where Nigeria came from behind to a 4-2 victory. Messi scored a brace the last time the sides met in the World Cup in 2014.

Nigeria is grouped alongside Argentina, Croatia and Iceland for the 2018 World Cup. The Super Eagles play against Argentina in the final fixture of the group stage at the Krestovsky Stadium, Saint Petersburg on June 26.


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