The Nigeria Football Federation ( NFF) says it won’t be held to ransom by the coach of the senior national team of Nigeria Gernot Rohr whose contract will expire next year.
Rohr signed a contract extension last year keeping him in Nigeria till June 2020 but that coincides with when Nigeria will be in the thick of action for the qualifiers for the 2021 Africa Cup of Nations.
In October the coach revealed that he is unsure of his future after that date because discussions have not been held over an extension which to him is a distraction considering that his contract will expire in the middle of the qualifiers for two different tournaments.
“I don’t know what will happen and nothing has been discussed. It is a surprise because we are expected to qualify for two tournaments. That says a lot about it,” he told German publication Mannheimer Morgen in early October.
Speaking on the situation, a chieftain of the Nigeria Football Federation ( NFF) revealed that the football body is aware of the situation but won’t be forced into making a decision by the coach citing their unhappiness that the coach revealed the terms of the deal to the media.
According to him, the coach is fond of disclosing confidential details in his contract with the media which the football body feels isn’t proper as they feel he is using the media to put them under pressure.
” We are aware of the situation with his contract, there are provisions in the deal for an extension or otherwise. However the way he is going about it is not in anyway fair to the board of the NFF “, he said.
” Rohr is fond of disclosing details that are supposed to be confidential with the media. It’s not in anyway the best way to approach a situation like this. It’s like he is trying to use the media to arm twist the NFF and we won’t bow to his antics. He can leave if he want to”, he remarked.
He further allayed fears about looking for a suitable replacement insisting that coaches around the world will jump at the idea of coaching the Super Eagles if it becomes vacant.
” If Rohr decides to leave we won’t have any problem replacing him. Infact it could be done in days. Most coaches won’t turn down the chance of managing the Super Eagles if the position becomes vacant. We are not in anyway scared of losing him if he insist on leaving next year”, he concluded.
Rohr’s time at the helm as coach of the senior national team of Nigeria has been mixed with many impressed with the progress the team has made under him. Some however believe that his shortcomings in terms of tactics, substitutions and team selection has cost the team in key games particularly against Argentina at the World Cup 2018 in Russia and the semi final of AFCON 2019 against Algeria.
Nigeria will begin the qualifiers for the 2021 Africa Cup of Nations qualifiers this weekend with games against Benin Republic and Lesotho respectively. They start off at home against Benin Republic before travelling to take on Lesotho in their second qualifiers.