Sunday, December 5, 2021
HomeSportExplained: Gernot Rohr’s Super Eagles situation

Explained: Gernot Rohr’s Super Eagles situation

Despite rumours suggesting the German has been sacked, he is set to remain in his role as national team coach.

On Thursday, fans of the Nigeria senior national team awoke to numerous reports indicating Super Eagles coach Gernot Rohr had been relieved of his position.

The 68-year-old, who has been in the role since taking charge in 2016, is Nigeria’s longest-serving national team coach. On Tuesday, he masterminded a 1-1 draw at home against Cape Verde that qualified the three-time African champions for the Third Round of CAF 2022 World Cup qualifying, which is scheduled to take place in March, 2022.

The reviews of that performance, and Nigeria’s general qualifying campaign so far, have been poor however. Critics have faulted the team’s style of play, incoherence and lack of ambition in spite of a strong core of talent. Nigeria won four of their six qualifiers, but only scored nine goals and suffered a shock 1-0 home defeat at the hands of the Central African Republic in October.

Victor Osimhen endured a frustrating evening as Nigeria lost in shocking fashion to CAR in October (Instagram/Super Eagles)

The vehemence of these criticisms has given rise to calls for him to be sacked, less than two months to the start of the 2021 Africa Cup of Nations (slated to hold in Cameroon in January 2022).

Reports of his sacking have, however, been greatly exaggerated.

While his position has indeed come under consideration by the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF), and reports indicate there is a form of consensus within the Executive to relieve him of his duties, the German is expected to remain in the position for the time being. This is on account of the sheer financial obligation that sacking him would place on the NFF.

Rohr is contracted until the end of 2022, and would be due a substantial fee (believed to be in the region of N600million) as compensation were the Glass House to pull the trigger a year early, taking in severance pay as well as a possible penalty for wrongful termination.

Gernot Rohr holds all the aces, with his contract insulating him from wanton dismissal
Gernot Rohr holds all the aces, with his contract insulating him from wanton dismissal

The former Bordeaux and Gabon boss is, per his contract, required to both qualify Nigeria for the 2022 World Cup and reach the Final of the Africa Cup of Nations. While the performances of the national team have been a source of concern among fans, Rohr presently remains on track to meet both objectives.

A number of reports have, however, suggested that the NFF are exploring a mutual termination agreement with the German, and have also recommended he consider resigning, in what is an implicit vote of no confidence.

At the time of this report, there has been no official communication from the NFF concerning Rohr’s contractual situation or job security.

Olafare Michael Oluwabukola
A Nationa Diploma holder in Computer Science at LENS POLYTECHNIC Offa, a full-time blogger, beatmaker, modern graphics designer, talent manager, and a vocalist


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