Football

Rohr’s invitation of NPFL stars: A mirage or reality?

Nigeria’s Super Eagles technical adviser, Gernot Rohr has invited three players from the Nigeria Professional Football League (NPFL) in his latest call-up for the Super Eagles, but the big question is, are they invited to play or to make up numbers?

Part of the conditions in the last contract the Franco-German boss signed says that he MUST include players from the local league, but it didn’t say if he must play them.

In the past, Rohr has invited some players from the NPFL, and there have been mixed reactions from fans who believe the players were not the best in the league.

The players, who have been invited before now have either been there to make up numbers or given cameo appearances and that was it. The only player who got to play 21 times for the Eagles is Ikechukwu Ezenwa, and while he was the national team shot-stopper, he was on the bench for 3 seasons in the league. Then, who scouted him?

Now, Rohr has invited Enyimba’s goalkeeper, John Noble and Anayo Iwuala – who replaced Sadiq Umar – and Abia Warriors’ Adeleke Adekunle – who replaced Kenneth Omeruo.

The 67-year-old gaffer has publicly said Maduka Okoye is his number one goalkeeper. So, any hope for Noble? Omeruo has not started a single game since AFCON in 2019. Again, any hope for Adekunle? Umar just got his first callup to the senior team. Any hope for Iwuala?

Let’s face it, Rohr is not a big fan of the NPFL and he did not hide his feelings, but will he make an exception this time? March 27 in Porto Novo, Benin Republic and 30th at the Teslim Balogun Stadium against Lesotho will reveal the answer. 

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