6 September 2017

Nigeria: My Goalkeepers Among Africa's Best, Rohr Claims

Photo: The Guardian
Ikechukwu Ezenwa.

Super Eagles' Manager, Gernot Rohr on Monday in Yaoundé disclosed that he was at no time worried by the spate of injuries worrying his goalkeepers. On arrival in the country in July last year, Rohr inherited Wolves Goalkeeper, Carl Ikeme as his number one shot stopper from the Sunday Oliseh era. But just when Super Eagles' followers felt they had seen a credible successor, Ikeme was ruled out of the game by leukaemia. In stepped Daniel Akpeyi, but the performance of the former Warri Wolves goalkeeper fell short of the standard Nigerians were used to.

'Fortunately,' the South Africa-based star was ruled of the double header against Cameroun and Rohr had no option than the go for third choice goalkeeper, Ikechukwu Ezenwa.

In just two matches, Ezenwa, a home-based goalkeeper, has reignited Nigerians' excitement in the goalkeeping department such that the fans have stopped clamouring for the return of former captain, Vincent Enyeama.

Enyeama retired for the national team in 2016.Speaking during the post match press conference after Nigeria's World Cup qualifier against Cameroun in Yaoundé on Monday, Rohr said he never questioned the ability of the goalkeepers available to him.

"We have some of the best goalkeepers in Africa. You can see from Ezenwa's performance that goalkeeping is the least of our problems. "Ikeme, Enyeama and Akpeyi are all out injured and we have Dele AJiboye and Dele Alampasu in the squad. When the injured players return we will have a pleasant selection problem to deal with."

Rohr believes the addition of an experienced goalkeepers' trainer will help improve the keepers, adding that the technical crew are always on the look out for fresh talents in all the departments.

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