As reactions roll in fast and furious, following the sack of Gernot Rohr as Super Eagles’ head coach, a former striker in the Nigerian squad, Victor Nosa Ikpeba (The Prince of Monaco) has reiterated that the move will cause disaster for the side.
SportsDayOnline.com reports that, with just over three weeks seperating the Eagles from the Africa Cup of Nations in Cameroon, Ikpeba is of a view that Rohr should have been allowed to continue until after the competition.
However, Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) announced their sack of the gaffer late Sunday, thereby bringing an end to a tenure that sees Rohr enter the record books as the longest serving coach of the Eagles ever.
That marked an end to the long reign of Roh, who was appointed manager of the three-time African champions in August 2016 and won his first game in charge by defeating Tanzania 1-0 at Godswill Akpabio Stadium in Uyo.
The German tactician led the Eagles to the 2018 World Cup in Russia, after qualifying with a match to spare, as well as the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations, where they finished third, following which he agreed on a two-and-a-half-year contract extension in May 2020.
The former Bordeaux, Gabon, Niger Republic and Burkina Faso coach got a record of 28 wins out of 54 matches with Nigeria and he is the most-capped coach in the national team’s history, but all that came to naught on Sunday night, when the hammer finally came down on his shoulders.
Before he was axed, the 68-year-old came under heavy criticism from Nigerians after the Super Eagles struggled but eventually advanced from Group C in the second round of the 2022 World Cup qualifiers, which Ikpeba says should have been used as the proper yardstick in keeping him.
Ikpeba warned about a repeat of negative consequences Nigeria has faced under similar circumstances in the past and declared emphatically while appearing during a programme on SuperSport: “I know what happened in 2002 and in 2010.
“My worry is that we forget history and we should not. Those who sacked the late Amodu Shuaibu twice said he was not good enough. Gernot Rohr has been too soft with the players the NFF can help him.
“Why not wait till after the AFCON and take a decision on his future. What will the new manager change. What changed in 2002 and in 2010? It was a disaster. This will happen again.”