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We’ve not sacked Gernot Rohr, says NFF

By Gowon Akpodonor (Lagos) nd Terhemba Daka (Abuja)
19 November 2021   |   4:18 am
With these words, ‘we’ve not sacked Gernot Rohr’, the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF), yesterday, dismissed rumours going round that the country had parted ways with Super Eagles’ head coach, Gernot Rohr...

Gernot Rohr

• Let him go now, Kalu tells Pinnick
• Coach will know his fate next week – Sports Minister

With these words, ‘we’ve not sacked Gernot Rohr’, the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF), yesterday, dismissed rumours going round that the country had parted ways with Super Eagles’ head coach, Gernot Rohr, following what has been generally perceived as ‘unimpressive’ performance by the team in the race to Qatar 2022 World Cup.

The football governing body said there is no truth in the reports saying: “Rohr has a contract with the NFF, and there is a procedure for disengagement. If we get to that bridge, both parties will look at the contract and see what has to be done both ways. The Super Eagles’ squad is a national asset and we are just fortunate to be in that space to take decisions. Any decision we take must be what will be acceptable to Nigerians from far and near,” the statement said.

The NFF said, “The Board of NFF is studying the report of the Technical Committee, which it submitted after the match against Cape Verde in Lagos on Tuesday. There are a number of possibilities, but we have not taken a decision to sack Gernot Rohr. I want to assure that whatever decision is eventually taken will be one that will please the generality of Nigerians.

According to online reports in the early hours of yesterday, Rohr was sacked after a company associated with the team agreed to pay the termination clause in his contract.

The reports stated that the NFF communicated the decision to Rohr, and had started the search for a new coach who will pilot the affairs of the team for the 2022 World Cup play-off, and also the Africa Cup of Nations in Cameroun in January.

Nigeria may face any of Ghana, Egypt, Cameroun, Mali or DR Congo for a place at the 2022 World Cup in Qatar. Many Nigerians, including Africa’s Pillar of Sports and former Abia State Governor, Orji Uzor Kalu, have, however, called on the NFF President, Amaju Pinnick, to replace Rohr.

Senator Kalu, who spoke with www.bestchoicesports.com.ng, stated that the last five years under Rohr as Eagles coach have been a waste, as far as football in the country is concerned.

He wondered how under Rohr, the team that parade stars and talented players, is struggling to qualify for the Africa Cup of Nations and World Cup competitions.

“In the last five years, we have wasted our time in football. There is nothing new that we are doing. To see a country with many professional players home and abroad struggling to qualify for the Africa Cup of Nations and World Cup is heartbreaking.

“Gernot Rohr is not a good coach, and I don’t understand why he is still managing Super Eagles. When I was governor, he applied to become Enyimba’s coach. Oscar Udoji brought him to Nigeria, but I refused to employ him. I am calling on Amaju Pinnick to wake up and to quickly find a replacement for Rohr,” Kalu stated.

MEANWHILE, Rohr is expected to know his fate next week, if words of the Sports Minister, Sunday Dare, are anything to go by. Speaking at the ministerial press briefing anchored by the presidential media team at the presidential villa, Abuja yesterday, Dare said his ministry was poised to adhere to due process on matters concerning the national football players and the technical staff.

The minister said his ministry would await the report from the NFF on the performance of the team in recent matches, review it, among others before taking the necessary action.

Specifically, Dare was asked to confirm whether the national team coach had been relieved of his job or asked to resign. While noting that he could not speak much on the matter, he assured that the NFF report will be ready by next week

Continuing, the minister assured that the Super Eagles would qualify for Qatar 2022, as the authorities were doing everything to ensure qualification.

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