Was Sports Minister Sunday Dare right to tweet on the competency of coach Gernot Rohr?
I think the Minister of Sports should have far more pressing matters on his plate than to wade into this Super Eagles situation in the manner he did. Restraint and being dispassionate publicly could have served him better. Rather than talk about sacking Rohr, I think the prudent thing to do is have a panel within the NFF re-examine recent matches with a clear head to determine what went well and why and what didn’t go so well and why so that the football authorities can learn valuable lessons going forward. It will be interesting to read the content of Rohr’s overall Post-Covid performance report from his own perspective and then compare with that of other members of the technical committee. They can then draw vital lessons and put things in place to avoid identified pitfalls. I will be interested, in the coming weeks after a thorough inquest, for the NFF to release a report on their findings as to why Nigeria failed to win a single match post-Covid and crucially what they plan to do about this moving forward. If part of their conclusion is to relieve Gernot Rohr of his duties, they owe it to Super Eagles fans to explain in full the rationale behind this decision other than the slim excuse of the 4:4 home draw to Sierra Leone.
After all, they gave him a target to qualify the nation for and win the 2022 Afcon, something we are still on course to do (at least on paper as Nigeria currently top her qualifying group). But it should not just be as simple as ‘sacking’ the coach. The matter on ground is far too complex for ‘sacking one coach’ to be the magic bullet that will put everything right with the Super Eagles. For all the shortcomings of Rohr, getting rid of him without getting rid of all other impediments to successful football management in Nigeria actually runs the risk of being counterproductive. Any new indigenous or foreign coach will still have to navigate the same shit (excuse my French) that Rohr and those before him have had to endure from a Football Association that struggles to put its own house in order. How will the (new) coach respond to such a toxic working environment? Will he develop a backbone and stay or will he take his shoes off and run away like Sunday Oliseh, Thijs Libregts or Thomas Dennerby (leaving the team in a more precarious position)? So, let’s get a full report on what happened in the last 4 matches, digest it, go through its recommendations and put this matter to bed. As for the sports minister, I believe he has far more important issues than sulking over 2 Super Eagles draws.
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