Nigeria’s minister of sports Sunday Dare has, for the umpteenth time, shown his contempt in public for the Super Eagles coach by telling the German tactician to shut up!
Like or loathe Rohr, it has to be seen as unacceptable by any standard in any country for the Sports Minister to make such a disrespectful statement towards the head coach of the county’s national team.
” He (Gernot Rohr) needs to shut up and do the work for which he was hired to do, he talks too much.” Said Sunday Dare.
When I read the story on a run-of-the-mill media blog, I harboured doubts about its authenticity. But now reading it on CSN, I am left gobsmacked!
One would have expected an eloquent speaker like Sunday Dare to come up with a more diplomatic and genteel way of conveying his thoughts rather than his brash and outright rude manner.
Let’s be clear, Rohr’s purview does not extend to managing Super Eagles B team (home based players). That, to my understanding, rests with the Assistant coach (whoever that is).
“Though I am not the coach of the CHAN Eagles, I think the players selected for this Mexico game stand a good chance of making the CHAN squad.” Said Rohr.
Without going deep into the background of this matter, it is simply wrong (in my view) for Dare to ask Rohr to ‘shut up’ in public.
Other coaches would consider resigning because of this affront but thus far, Rohr is yet to comment.
I think prior comments by Rohr that drew the ire of Dare included when the German said: “You cannot play against Mexico and say you will win it with these home-based players.
It will be difficult to get a result because Mexico is a very wonderful team.” Said Rohr.
Be that as it may, I will never support our Sports Minister openly insulting a sitting National Team coach.
Dare also said that ‘the NFF needs to call Rohr to order'.
I think he is the one that needs to be called to order. He is getting way too involved in football matters and continues to be openly disrespectful to Rohr.
In the wake of Nigeria’s rather scandalous 4:4 draw against Sierra Leone last year, Minister Dare didn’t mince his words saying (among other things) ” we demand better performance, better technical depth, better player mix and team harmony and a functional national team.”
He implored the NFF to hold Rohr ‘tightly to the KPIs in his contract (before it is too late)!’
Rohr does have his shortcomings but I don’t think these interventions by the Sports Minister are at all auspicious.
At best, these conversations should be had between Dare and Pinnick in private. Public rebuke of the national team coach with near-incendiary language shows lack of respect for a coach trying to do his best for Nigeria under challenging and disjointed circumstances.
You might think Rohr is an excellent tactician, you might think he is tactically deficient but nobody will think asking him to ‘shut up’ is acceptable!
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