The Super Eagles will not be heading to the 2021 Africa Cup of Nations to be held in Cameroon in January 2022 with Gernot Rohr in charge following the decision of the Nigeria Football Federation to terminate the contract of Franco-German Rohr who has come under huge criticisms from football faithful in Nigeria.
The onetime Bayern Munich right back has been the head coach of the team on 64 occasions but despite leading the Eagles through the qualification campaigns of two major tournaments, the 2018 FIFA World Cup and 2019 Africa Cup of Nations in 2019 with few games to spare, his tactical application has always been questionable.
The Nigeria Football Federation on Sunday took the drastic decision to terminate Rohr’s appointment and has appointed former Eagles right back Austin Eguavoen as the interim coach.
Before his appointment as the temporary boss of the team, Eguavoen served as the Technical Director of the NFF.
“The Nigeria Football Federation has appointed Mr Augustine Eguavoen, currently its Technical Director, as the Technical Adviser of the Super Eagles on an interim basis,” a media release from the NFF Communications Department on Sunday evening stated.
“This is with immediate effect, and follows the termination of the relationship with Franco-German Gernot Rohr, who has been in charge of the three –time African champions for the past 64 months, and is Nigeria’s longest –serving manager,” the release further said.
“Following a virtual meeting of the NFF Executive Committee on Sunday, it was decided that Eguavoen will work with Salisu Yusuf (Chief Coach); Paul Aigbogun (Assistant Coach); Joseph Yobo (Assistant Coach); Dr Terry Eguaoje (Assistant Coach) and Aloysius Agu (Goalkeeper Trainer).
Former Nigeria captains Augustine ‘Jay Jay’ Okocha, Nwankwo Kanu and Garba Lawal have been appointed to provide technical and ambassadorial support for the crew, according to the Federation.
General Secretary of the NFF, Dr Mohammed Sanusi said:
“The relationship between the Nigeria Football Federation and Mr Rohr has come to an end. We thank him for his services to the Super Eagles and Nigeria.
“We also want to thank the Federal Ministry of Youth and Sports for their collaboration and guidance all through.”
“Eguavoen, a former Nigeria captain, was coach of the squad when it finished in third place at the Africa Cup of Nations in Egypt in 2006. He was on-field captain when the Super Eagles lifted the Africa Cup for the first time on away ground, in Tunisia 27 years ago.
“He will now take charge of the team as it begins preparations for the 33rd Africa Cup of Nations taking place in Cameroon 9th January – 6th February 2022, and until the appointment of a substantive Head Coach.
The Super Eagles camp ahead of the 2021 Africa Cup of Nations is expected to open on December 28, 2021 in Lagos.
Izuchukwu Okosi is a Nigerian sports and entertainment journalist with two decades of experience in the media industry having begun his media journey in 2002 as an intern at Mundial Sports International (MSI) and Africa Independent Television (AIT), owners of Daar Communications Plc.
In October 2004, Okosi joined Complete Communications Limited, publishers of Complete Sports newspaper and Complete Football magazine as a reporter and later script writer for the Complete Sports studio.
He worked there for 13 years until October 2017.
Okosi also worked various times as Correspondent, Content creator and Editor at Sports Market International Magazine, Opera News, All Nigeria Soccer Media and Iconic Media Watch.
He also undertook freelance writing gigs for some local and international organizations.
Okosi is a member of the Actors Guild of Nigeria (AGN), Association of Movie Producers (AMP), Association of Voiceover Artistes of Nigeria (AVOA), Sports Writers Association of Nigeria (SWAN) and Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ).
He has been part of cast in some Nollywood movies and radio dramas including Blood Money 2, Scores To Settle, Dead End 2, Another Campus Tale and Battle Line.
Aside mainstream media and the entertainment industry, he has interests in scouting/unearthing of talents in the sports and creative sectors, exports business and property development.