Gernot Rohr gets privileges cut after South Africa upset

Nigeria Football Federation will institute scouting department

Nigeria head coach Gernot Rohr got some tough talk from his highers-up after suffering an upset loss to South Africa over the weekend. In an emergency meeting with the Nigeria Football Federation’s technical committee, Rohr was informed that his ability to invite players onto the senior team would be restricted from the time being. Rohr did not have his decisions interfered with by others in the administration since he was hired in August 2016.

“We discussed from match ball, tactics deployed, the fitness of players, organization of the team and all what’s not. And at the end of the day, we made recommendations to the board. We called for the establishment of the scouting unit in the technical department and that henceforth, we should have a pre-knowledge of players invited before sending to the public,” Barrister Chris Green, chairman of the NFF technical committee, said after the meeting. He said that there will be periodic press conferences held by the technical team and the club will make a concerted effort to build up “synergy” between the scouting department and the technical department. Green also said that the team would hire a psychologist in an effort to get the team better mental preparation for upcoming matches.

This comes after a couple of days ago when Rohr tried to justify the surprising loss to South Africa, which was the first time such a result had happened in 25 years. “We knew that in the second half, the experienced team of SA would be dangerous on counters, and that’s what happened,” Rohr said at the time. He also blamed the loss partly on the conditioning of his players, saying that they did not “cope physically in the second half after expending energy in the first.” He said that his team’s youth led to nerves getting the best of them, but critics feel that this is more of a reflection on Rohr than the players themselves.

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