Super Eagles’ Technical Adviser Gernot Rohr has expressed optimism for his side in their crucial African Cup of Nations qualifier against the Bafana Bafana at the FNB Stadium in Johannesburg on Saturday.
Rohr told busybuddiesng.com that although there are a few setbacks the team faced, with the suspension of Wilfred Ndidi, and injuries from Shehu Abdullahi, Francis Uzoho and Odion Ighalo the new players invited to the team will also get the job done in South Africa.
“We had the experience of the World Cup and I think my young team can give a good performance even if we’re missing four of important key players especially our goalkeeper and the goal scorer [Ighalo]. But I think the training sessions were good and we are preparing very well for the match.”
The Franco-German also highlighted the goalkeeping situation as a peculiar situation stating that the opening left by the Elche shot-stopper, Uzoho, is being keenly contested between Chippa United’s Daniel Akpeyi and Enyimba International’s Ikechukwu Ezenwa.
“The competition is between Ezenwa and Daniel Akpeyi,” Rohr said.
“The advantage Akpeyi has is that he his known in South Africa and he knows the players [South Africans] very well and it will be a ‘home’ game for him while the advantage of Ezenwa is that he has been with the group for a while now and played matches in the qualifiers, decisive matches against Cameroon… and he did very well, and also in Algeria.
“We will confirm with the goalkeeper coaches what our options are, but at the moment both of them are able to play,” he added.
Rohr also expressed his wish for the Super Eagles to avenge their first-ever defeat to Bafana Bafana in all competitions which occurred on Matchday 1 of the 2019 AFCON qualifiers. He is also looking to get a win with a game in hand in other to seal their spot in Africa’s biggest football competition scheduled for July 2019 in Cameroon.