Super Eagles head coach Gernot Rohr has expressed his surprise at the news that his captain, John Mikel Obi opted to play the all-important Russia 2018 World Cup Group D clash with Argentina despite knowing about his father’s kidnap ordeal.
Mikel’s father, Pa Michael Obi was travelling to attend a funeral in the company of his driver when he was kidnapped in the Southeastern part of Nigeria.
According to Rohr, he got to know about the kidnapping on Monday, July 2, when his father was rescued from the hands of his kidnappers.
Rohr was speaking with ESPN, in his words, the former Bayern Munich defender said: “I was very surprised to hear this.”
“I did not know about it because he did not tell me.
“But it shows that he has good mental strength to be able to play in this situation. He is a real leader.” He added.
Rohr also added that he would have left Mikel to make the decision to play against Argentina if he had known.
The Franco-German tactician said: “If I know about it, I would let him decide. No pressure.
“I have full confidence in him to make the best decision for himself, his family and his country.
“It is shocking that such a thing happens to anybody. And to somebody who represents his country.”
This is the second time Pa. Michael Obi will be kidnapped after he was forcefully taken away in Jos in 2011 and thereafter spent 10 days in the kidnappers’ den before he was released.
His release was secured on Monday following a gun battle with the kidnappers according to the Nigerian Police.