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Super Eagles coach Rohr defends decision on his reliance on foreign-based players

The German tactician has been subjected to criticism on the sparingly use of home-based players in the national team

Nigeria coach Gernot Rohr has defended his decision on his over-reliance on foreign-based players.

There have been calls for the German tactician to introduce more home-based players in his squad in order to help develop the Nigeria Professional Football League.

Recently, president of Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) Amaju Pinnick revealed some terms that will be part of the 66-year-old’s new contract and it is believed the German tactician will be mandated to include a certain number of players based in the country in his squad.

Among the NPFL stars, only Ikechukwu Ezenwa has been a consistent member of the Super Eagles since Rohr took charge of the side, a decision he has vehemently defended.

“We cannot find all the time players in the local league who are better than the other ones,” Rohr told ESPN.

“The criterion for us, the first criteria is the quality of the players. Everybody knows, not only in Nigeria, that the best players are in Europe or somewhere else in professional leagues. That is the fact.

“I invited already more than 23 or 24 local players since I have been in charge of the Super Eagles but we invite them and then immediately they are going to Europe. It is wonderful for them but maybe not for us.”

Given Nigeria’s  failure to qualify for CHAN tournament,  a competition meant for home-based players, Rohr says the situation has made it difficult for him to select more local players to the national team.

“CHAN team and under-20 team must play all the time. The coaches who are responsible for these teams, must work with me together. And normally the best of the league are in either CHAN or under-20 or under-17,” he added.

The Super Eagles were expected to take on Sierra Leone in an Africa Cupf of Nations qualifiers in March before the game was suspended owing to coronavirus outbreak.

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