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Rohr to Eagles: You can win 2021 AFCON… but stay humble

Rohr to Eagles: You can win 2021 AFCON… but stay humble
June 03
10:50 2020

Gernot Rohr, Super Eagles technical adviser, says his team has the chance of winning the 2021 African Cup of Nations (AFCON).

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The 66-year-old Franco-German tactician, however, advised that to achieve that feat, his players must have to stay humble and qualify for the tournament before dreaming of lifting the trophy for the fourth time.

In an interview with Channels TV on Tuesday, Rohr also maintained that he won’t be pressured into picking players that are not good enough to don the country’s football jerseys.

“I think we have a chance to win the next Nations Cup but first we have to qualify – it’s not finished. We’ve started very well with two victories,” he said.

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“But you know it’s always easy to say we will win the Nations Cup. We will go into the quarter finals of the World Cup but let’s stay humble, please.

“We are preparing the future now and we want to know how we can win the AFCON. Let’s qualify first and I think we are on a good way to that and then, let’s stay humble if we want to win it.

“We all the time have our philosophy in our team and staff to stay humble, to respect the other team, to respect the opponents and we will not change.

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“I think we have a good team, we are already number three now in Africa when I arrived, we were number 13. So we are on a good way but it needs time and we even don’t know when the AFCON will hold.”

Rohr also spoke on assigning Joseph Yobo, his new assistant, after Imama Amapakabo was let off the team with the task of scouting for players for the Eagles from the Nigerian Professional Football League (NPFL).

“I recently had a video conference with all my staff – medical and technical staff. I wanted to introduce Joseph Yobo, my new assistant and I spoke with my doctors, my physios, everybody,” he said.

“Yobo speaks good French which is good for us and he will help me to watch the local players because he is based in Lagos.

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“I will be in Abuja but the problem is that there are not games to see there. I want to see more games. We have to be everywhere to scout for the best talents.  I think that we have to work together with other local coaches for the best ones to be picked.

“It’s not part of my contract to take players who are not so good as the ones already in the team. I can chose my players myself – it is most important, so nobody can tell me you’ve to take this one, or that one.

“I can take the best players and I don’t do it alone, we have a team in our staff. I have my assistants, I have my analyzer and every Monday we have our meeting and we talk about the weekend games, what the players did. We have to take the best ones no matter where they are coming from.”

He also said Victor Osimhen has a good chance of moving to the Premier League after this season but wants the striker to join a club, where he will play regularly.

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“If he stays for another season in Lille, it’s good for him because he is playing regularly. If he goes to another big club – you’ve seen the clubs who are eventually ready to buy him now, he’s not so sure to play because there is a big competition for the starting places in the team,” he added.

“If he stays in Lille, it will be good because he will progress, we’re sure about this. But he is also able now because he is progressing so much to play in a very big club. It’s depending, if he has competition, it’ll be better to play in a better club than Lille. If he’s not playing, it’s not so good for him because a young player like him has to play for him to progress.”

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