Rohr eyes Iceland win, keeps game-plan under wraps

By George Akpayen

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Photo: Getty Images
Photo: Getty Images

Nigeria head coach Gernot Rohr is hoping his team will stand up to Iceland to keep their World Cup campaign alive when both nations meet at the Volgograd Arena this Friday.

Rohr knows his men cannot afford to lose against Iceland’s Viking as it will bring to an end their World Cup outing in Russia even in the midst of being asked about his future in the event of a defeat.

“For me, it’s not a question to lose this game. I think we will not lose this game and I don’t ask this question myself but you can ask it if you want after the game. But I will tell you we will not lose,” said Rohr at the pre-match conference in Volgograd on Thursday.

The 64-year-old technical adviser of Nigeria also kept his game-plan to his chest but harped on “good organisation” from his team when they play against Iceland.

“The tactics is something I don’t want to speak with journalists but with my players. We will have a tactics to win the match. And which one exactly? I cannot tell you.

“Before the last game we had a good organisation but we lost the match but perhaps was not the mistake of the organisation of the tactics. We conceded two stupid goals — one own goal and one (from) penalty.

“Yes so we must be ready with good organisation against a different team from Iceland — a different team from Croatia. So we have to adapt to our tactics against this different team we will play against,” he added.

The former Burkina Faso manager however acknowledged that it will be a “difficult” game for the Super Eagles as the Iceland squad are very experienced which he hinged on the average age of the European side.

“We have a lot of respect for Iceland. They did well in their first game against Argentina. We know it will be very difficult to beat them. They don’t have the big stars and we don’t have big stars — so it will be a match of two collectives. One experienced (team) which is Iceland with average of, I think, 28 or 29 and we are 24.8 or 24.9 (in average age). It will be the young against the experienced team, it will be interesting to see how it goes,” Rohr said.

Nigeria versus Iceland kicks off 4pm WAT.

© The Predictor NG

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