Is the sack of Algeria coach good news for Nigeria?
by Anthony Nlebem
October 21, 2016 | 12:50 am| | | Start Conversation
In less than one month, Nigeria’s male senior football side, the Super Eagles will keep a date with Algeria in one of the 2018 FIFA World Cup qualifier.
Opinions are divided if the exit of Algerian coach could be advantageous to Nigeria or not.
Shortly after the games between Algeria and Cameron, the Algeria Football Federation (FAF) announced the departure of Milovan Rajevac as the national team coach.
It will be recalled that the Desert Foxes played a goalless draw with the Indomitable Lions of Cameroon, the aftermath that saw Algerian players revolt against the coach.
Player-power forced Rajevac out in Algeria, who tackled Nigeria on November 12 in a crucial World Cup clash after they were held to a 1-1 draw at home by Cameroon.
Nigeria tops the qualifying group with three points ahead of favourites Algeria and Cameroon, who are on a point each.
Looking at it from this point, Rajevac sack could be a plus for Nigeria; it is less than a month before the cracker between Nigeria and Algeria and they are still talking about hiring a new coach, the team spirit and unity may not be there for now.
Again, Rajevac was sacked after falling out with his team, not a question of not having quality players. So, on the other hand, it might not be all smooth ride for Super Eagles as they have good players that can do the job against Nigeria.
Super Eagles coach Gernot Rohr is very skeptical that Algeria might pose a dangerous threat for Super Eagles after the exit of their coach.
Rohr warned that the dismissal of Serbian Milovan Rajevac could well work in favour of Algeria when they visit Uyo stadium next month in continuation of the World Cup qualifiers.
“This sack may be the motivation Algeria needs to play against us,” warned the experienced Rohr, who led Nigeria to win convincing 2-1 in Zambia.
“It will be difficult for a new coach to put together a team in three weeksfor our match, but possibly, the assistant coaches could manage it.”
Another factor that might seem to favour Nigeria is that the FAF is not considering hiring a new coach before next month’s tie with Nigeria.
FAF president Mohamed Raouraou admitted it would be impossible to name a permanent coach before next year’s AFCON in Gabon.
The FAF has announced that Rajevac assistants, Nabil Neghiz and Yazid Mansouri, are in temporary charge and will lead the team for next month’s trip to Nigeria.
“It will be impossible to hire a new coach before the match in Nigeria,” said Raouraou.
“At this moment, there are no names as likely coaches.
“But the national team will have a new coach before the Nations Cup.”
Will Nigeria take the advantage of the crisis rocking the Algerian football come November 12 at the Uyo stadium?
I guess Nigerians are waiting and can’t accept anything less than a victory from the Super Eagles.
Having missed out at the last FIFA World Cup in Brazil in 2014, fans are eager to watch their darling team play at the biggest stage of the game.
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