2018 World Cup qualifiers: Ekpo, Bosso fault Rohr’s list against Lions
Former Nigeria midfielder, Friday Ekpo, and former Flying Eagles coach, Ladan Bosso, have disagreed with Nigeria coach, Gernot Rohr, over his 23-man list for the 2018 World Cup qualifying double-header against Cameroon on September 1 and 4.
The German on Tuesday released his list, which was dominated with known names, except for Israel-based Anthony Nwakaeme and Hull City defender Ola Aina.
The Super Eagles host the Indomitable Lions in Uyo on September 1 before embarking on the trip to Yaounde on September 4 for the reverse fixture.
Nigeria top Group B with six points while Cameroon are second with two points.
Ekpo and Bosso told our correspondent that the coach should have called up players based on current form.
Ekpo said, “The European leagues are just starting and most of these players have yet to show their current form. Apart from Mikel (Obi) and (Odion) Ighalo, who have been playing in the Chinese league, some of the other players in the list may struggle for form before the game.
“(Kelechi) Iheanacho has not really impressed for Leicester because he is injured. He may find it difficult to replicate the form we have known him for in past games. I am not saying he should call up only home-based players for the ties but the left and right-back positions have been problematic since he (Rohr) took charge of that team. The solution may lie in the domestic league players, who did well against Benin recently.”
Bosso said there were better goalkeeping choices in the domestic league, who should have been considered by the German ahead of Portugal-based Dele Alampasu.
“The list is good given that Rohr called up players he is used to. But I believe that some of those players, especially in the defence, could be replaced by one or two-home based defenders.
“Also, there are active goalkeepers in the NPFL, who need to be given chances rather than Alampasu, who hasn’t featured this season for his club.”Punch