Recently, Media Officer of the Super Eagles Toyin
Ibitoye disclosed in a radio programme that head
coach Gernot Rohr will not quit his job and is expected
back in Nigeria within the month of January ahead of
the draws for the second round of qualifiers to the
2022 FIFA World Cup.
The news was a good one in the sense that it ensures
stability in the Nigerian national team albeit certain
persons in the Nigeria Football Federation apparently
do not want Rohr to continue his job.
The former Burkina Faso and Gabon coach was free
to negotiate a new contract with another from January
1 with his contract with the NFF set to end in June
and he has stated in the media that he could leave
with DR Congo said to be interested in his services..
“Everybody in the NFF appreciates the job being done
by Gernot Rohr. The coaches and the players, we are
in touch all the time,” Ibitoye stated on Brila FM.
“Rohr loves his job that he is doing in the Eagles and
the results are showing so why should he leave at this
point. There’s no true in that report at all.
“Rohr is coming back. The World Cup qualifiers will
start in March so we have to be united, focused;
ensure that we have no distractions because we have
to approach the World Cup qualifiers with all the
seriousness that it deserves.
“We expect Rohr to come to back to Nigeria say in
two weeks’ time all things being equal. He will be
meeting with the Nigeria Football Federation and of
course you know that in the third week of January the
draws for the second round of qualifiers for the 2022
“There are plans for him to be at the draws in Egypt.
That’s the next agenda and like I said, March is not
too far away.”
Ibitoye also stressed that relationship between the
coach and his employers have improved after media
spats between both parties.
“It is in our interest that we should avoid those cracks
(Rohr and the NFF media war) because if we don’t,
there wont much headway.
“We should ensure that there’s no third party
interference and I like the harmonious and matured
way things are going on right now. If the NFF provide
him with an accommodation that will be nice and it will
cut cost in the interest of the NFF.
Ibitoye also debunked claims that Rohr has no interest
in watching the Nigeria Professional Football League
and do not wish to make his team one that parade
many home based players.
“Rohr has watched a lot of matches in the NPFL. I will
personally pick him up from his hotel to the stadiums.
We have watched matches in Lagos, Enugu, Jos and
many other places,” the image maker of the Eagles
It will be in the best interest of the Nigerian national
team and for the chieftains of the NFF not to sack the
present coach in the midst of qualifiers for major
tournaments as that could affect team chemistry and
tactical adaptability should a new coach be employed.
Continuity is key in any sphere of life although
admittedly changes are necessary when things go
Even if there will be a change of guard, the best bet is
to wait until the tickets for the 2021 Africa Cup of
Nations and the 2022 FIFA World Cup are in the bag.