• Says Bonfere’s Interest In Eagles Unnecessary
Former international, Friday Elahor, has advised the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) to act fast if it is interested in relieving Coach Gernot Rohr of his job as coach of the Super Eagles. He said this is to avoid any form of distraction in the team’s preparation for the Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) held next month in Cameroun.
Speaking to The Guardian, Elahor said he understood the worries of some Nigerians, who no longer have faith in the French-German tactician, despite qualifying the country for AFCON holding in Cameroun and the Qatar 2022 play-off slated for March, next year.
“Despite the overwhelming consensus that Rohr should go, I think this should be after AFCON because the tournament is a little too close before the start of Cameroun 2022. Nigerians should be patient and wait after the AFCON to decide that.
“For Rohr to go, it is only the authority that has the power to decide whether he stays or leaves. All the people clamouring for his exit are only outsiders as far as sending Rohr away is concerned. And if they have taken the decision to let him go, then they have to do it very fast because we don’t have enough time again,” he said.
Commenting on the interest shown by former Super Eagles coach, Bonfere Jo, to stage a comeback into the team, the former Super Eagles’ winger said the idea of seeing the Dutch handling the Eagles should not even be discussed at all.
“Bonfere had his time and he did his best by winning gold medal for us at the USA Atlanta ’96 Olympics. Telling him to come back is like asking Clemens Westerhof to also return. They both did well during their times and we still talk about their feats and that should end there,” he said.
Sharing his view on the appeal for an indigenous coach to handle the Super Eagles, Elahor said, “Coming back to pick a Nigerian coach is what some of us have been asking for. But for me, even if he is not made the head, let him be an assistant to whomever they pick.
“If we are thinking of employing any of our indigenous coaches to take over from Rohr, it is something we need to sit down and think about very well. Not that we will go and bring in a coach that will embarrass us again as we saw a local coach that was banned for receiving a bribe and was later recalled.
“Some are calling for the employment of Coach Emmanuel Amuneke to replace Rohr. And I think he too should be given a chance to handle the Eagles. We remember he was at the last AFCON in Egypt with Tanzania, even though the country didn’t go far in Egypt, at least he qualified them for the tournament despite not having the quality of players that Nigeria has.
“And I think if we back him up just as we supported Rohr, I know he will do well with the quality of players we have. I believe he is equal to the task just as the late Shaibu Amodu and Stephen Keshi, as well as Austin Eguavoen, Samson Siasia and Daniel Amokachi, who were given opportunities. I am totally in support of Amuneke being given a chance to also prove himself,” he stated.