These are five things Gernot Rohr said in the interview with Super Eagles media officer Toyin Ibitoye.
In the interview which is on the official Youtube page of the Super Eagles, Rohr gives his thought on Nigeria’s 2018 FIFA World Cup qualifiers against Zambia and Algeria, his team’s World Cup chances and the Nigerian fans.
These are five things he said in the interview
1. The win against Zambia and Algeria
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“It was difficult to go to Zambia in the first game because they have a good team and we didn’t have time to build the team. But the first game against Tanzania gave us some time. Algeria and Zambia were similar games. In the two games, we attacked very well and scored two goals in the first half. It was a good beginning but in the second half, my players were missing a little bit some physical forces. We defended well against Algeria, not so good in Zambia but enough to win the game.”
2. Plan for the team before the qualifiers against Cameroon
“We must have the team stronger in a certain position, we must say that not all is perfect. Some positions were not okay. We would be monitoring some players in certain position, monitoring the 2017 Africa Cup of Nations to watch Cameroon and Algeria. We should have friendly games and we start AFCON qualifiers in March 2017.”
3. Friendly games
“We have AFCON qualifiers in March and June. We have a friendly against Egypt to prepare them for AFCON and I will be using the local team. We will also be monitoring players and visit them at their clubs and speak with their coaches. The biggest physical work is done in their clubs all the time so we must have the good relationship with the club, club doctors and coaches.”
4. On his team
“They are hungry because they want to go to the World Cup. Because they don’t have so many titles and trophies at the international level, they are hungry. When you are young and hungry you are very motivated. To go to Russia is more than a dream for them. They missed the AFCON and that is already difficult for a big country like Nigeria.”
5. Relationship with the fans
“In our game against Algeria, our players were tired in the second half but the fans pushed them to defend the result and score their third goal. We are happy to be in Uyo, this stadium is wonderful and the pitch was very good and the Governor loves football. He came to see the team yesterday before the game and he is really behind the team. In Abuja, we have some fantastic fans also. We had some training there and felt a good contact with them. I promise them that their players will always fight for their country and will always give the best.”