Super Eagles Technical Adviser, Gernot Rohr has defended his match strategy against Croatia and also took a slight dig at those criticizing the role of captain Mikel Obi on the pitch.
Nigeria’s opening game at the FIFA 2018 World Cup was a disappointing 2-0 defeat, where Mikel played high up field behind the lone striker, Odion Ighalo.
The midfield catalyst , could not string passes or help dictate Nigeria’s play as the three-time African champions played catch up for the majority of the game, while also struggling to create chances.
But in a presser on Wednesday, Rohr maintained the decision to deploy the 31-year-old as a number was a collective decision in the team.
Rohr stressed that the team had won games in the past with Mikel playing as attacking midfielder and the criticisms were not objective.
‘There was Etebo playing number 6 doing very well, there was Ndidi, also, playing number 6 doing very well. Perhaps you want us to play with three number 6s, We won all the games since I came on board in two years with Obi Mikel in this offensive position. He was giving decisive passes; remember against Cameroon we won 4-0 it was exactly the same organisation,’ the Coach said.
‘If we had played Mikel as a number 6 and we had lost, you would have asked same question why did you change his position to number 6, when we won all our games with him as number 10.
‘It is normal you’re searching for some reasons; The media, Coaches who are now pundits at the world cup.’
‘But we know exactly what we are doing, the players and me agree exactly before each game about our organisation.’
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