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Super Eagles Coach Gives Reason Why Team Lost To Croatia

Valentine Chinyem

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Super Eagles’ Head Coach, Gernot Rohr, has described the Super Eagles’ 0-2 loss to Croatia in their opening match at the 2018 World Cup, to too “many mistakes’’.

Coach Rohr, said this during the post-match conference of the Group D fixture.

“We know we made some mistakes, too many important mistakes, and it is clear that we need to get better in order to move on,’’ the coach said.

More so, he added that the team had a some what lacklustre attitude during play, while noting that the entire team was disappointed ans saddened at the result, and that they need to work more on being professional with the set-pieces.

“Our organisation was good, that is clear just as the tactics were not wrong, but we need to be more professional in the way we take the set-pieces. We need to be better before our next game,’’ he added.

“Mikel has since I took over always been playing the way we deployed him today, and this has yielded results for us.

“But, he couldn’t have done better than he did today, because of the quality of those he was playing against.

“He had Ivan Rakitic of FC Barcelona and Luka Modric of Real Madrid playing against him, and they are of good quality and playing for clubs bigger than that of Mikel who plays in China.

“So, he really did well,’’ he said.

On the 62nd minute substitution of Alex Iwobi, the coach said it was not done out of poor performance by the Arsenal FC player.

“Iwobi deserved his starting place, based on his performances in the last few days. He only had big work to do with the full back, and this took much out of him.

“However, he did well and I don’t think he shouldn’t have started the game,’’ he said.

Rohr, however, assured that he and his assistants would go on to ensure the team was improved upon before their June 22 date with Iceland in Volgograd.

“We will improve because it is important for us. We have to get better in order to move forward,’’ he said.

The Super Eagles of Nigeria lost through an own goal by Oghenekaro Etebo and a Luka Modric penalty kick.