Super Eagles coach Gernot Rohr said Nigeria is too big to miss out of the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Football Tournament (OFT) hence he would be heading straight to Cairo to help the national Under-23 team squarely under his assistant, Imama Amapakabo.
Amapakabo has been under intense pressure lately after his Home-based Super Eagles Team B were edged out of qualification for the 2020 African Nations Championship (CHAN) by Togo; and the former international goalkeeper seemingly need all the support to earn Nigeria one of the continental tickets to Tokyo 2020.
“I’m going to Egypt first to assist the U-23,” Rohr told newsmen from France.
The 2019 U-23 AFCON will be held in Egypt between 8-22 November.
Nigeria have been handed a tough preliminary group section along with West African rivals Cote d’Ivoire as well as Zambia and South Africa and the Olympic Eagles will start their campaign on 9th November at Al Salam Stadium in Cairo against Cote d’Ivoire to be followed with the games against Zambia on 12th November and South Africa on 15th November.
Pressed about what his level of involvement would be with the Olympic Eagles, the vastly-experienced former Bayern Munich defender said the buck will stop at Amapakabo’s desk as the substantive coach, adding his planned trio to Cairo for the championship offers him further opportunity at watching closely youngsters who might be called up for the Super eagles in the nearest future.
He said pointedly:“ team selection is Imama. But qualification for Olympics is very important and some players could also be interesting for my team. But I will try to help Imama.”
Meanwhile, Rohr has equally revealed that players to prosecute the forthcoming 2021 AFCON qualifying matches against Benin and Lesotho would be unveiled ‘very soon.’