England friendly: Super Eagles need to work harder in Russia – Rohr, fans

Super Eagles Coach, Gernot Rohr, has admitted that the team still has a long way to go to be able to make an impression during the World Cup starting on June 14 in Russia.

After watching the lack lustre performance of his team against the 3 Lions of England on Saturday, during which the Super Eagles lost 1-2 to the English national team, Coach Gernot Rohr tweeted: “This game shows we still have a lot of work to do to be ready for the World Cup. We have to make the best use of the 2 weeks left before our first game in Russia. It’s time to focus…no distractions.”

Chairman of the Edo State Football Association, Frank Ilaboya, has urged Nigerians not to be discouraged over the country’s defeat to England at a friendly match played at Wembley Stadium on Saturday.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that Gary Cahill and Harry Kane put England ahead after finding the net in the seventh and 35th minute of the first half.

Nigeria’s Alex Iwobi pulled a goal back in the 47th minute of the game to reduce the country goal deficit.

Ilaboya said the outcome of the encounter was not a bad result, adding that fans should be more concerned about the team’s quality of play in Russia.

“We all know friendly games are test matches, so I believe we did not do badly against England.

“I so much believe in the team and the ability of the players, individually they may not be skillful as the 1994 squad but they play as a team,” he said.

He urged the Super Eagles handler, Gehr Rohr, to block all loopholes in the team before the kick-off of the Mundial.

Bright Omokaro, an ex-international, told NAN that the team performed fairly against the 3 Lions of England.

Omokaro said that the coach needed to work on all the technical lapses in the team.

“We play fairly but the coach still have a lot of technical work to do in the team, there is no cohesion among the players.

“All these errors should be rectified and the players should also justify themselves by playing well, “he said.

The Super Eagles will play their last friendly match against Czech Republic before the World Cup in Russia.

Nigeria is in group D alongside Iceland, Argentina and Croatia

Player ratings:

Francis Odinaka Uzoho : His several saves, aerial dominance, use of feet and command of his area was not enough to stop the two goals. His abilities has showed a bit of what he can offer in the future.  6/10

Leon Balogun : Porous performance by him today. He looked tensed and was unable to contain Sterling, who couldn’t utilise his chances. He needs to work more on his pacing. 4/10

William Troost-Ekong: Always looks elegant, calm and composed but sometimes needs to sniff danger sooner. He made some outstanding clearances which could have cost the Super Eagles more goals. 7/10

Shehu Abdullahi: Deserved to be substituted and undoubtedly might be dropped by the Head coach. Caught out of position several times and with the ball at his feet, he looked uncomfortable. 3/10

Brian Idowu:  Confident and Steady. Played the full match, which might be a signal that he has confirmed his position in the team for the World cup. Did well to track back and deliver a last-gasp block on Ashley Young’s shot from few yards when both centre backs were taken out on the counter. 7/10

Ogenyi Onazi: Again, he looked out of place and showed no connection with Joel Obi in the middle for Nigeria. Gave away the second goal by his inaccurate pass. He is yet to confirm his importance in the team for the World Cup. 3/10

Joel Obi: Wasn’t  on top of his game, but was more accurate and possessive than Onazi in the midfield. He was rightly substituted by the coach to give more life to the Super Eagles’ midfield. 3/10

John Obi Mikel: Failed to mark down his former Chelsea colleague, Cahill, who scored from a free header. He didn’t really have any impact on the game as he would have loved playing from his favourite position in the middle. The captain, however had a better second half display. 5.5/10

Victor Moses: Struggled to stamp his authority in attack probably because he played further forward than he does with Chelsea. He was only visible in the last minute of first half when he had a shot on target. Showed more energy in the second before he was substituted for Ahmed Musa. 4/10

Alex Iwobi: Excellent performance today, scored the consolation goal and was always coming deeper to connect midfield with attack. Had the most completed dribbles in the game and undoubtedly man of the match for Nigeria. 8/10

Odion Ighalo: Eager to get on the ball and try something new. But was isolated in the first half and had to battle staying onside. However, outstanding skills in the second half before he was substituted. He shot was blocked but a rebound from Iwobi gave the consolation goal. 6/10

Substitutions

John Ogu: Came in for Onazi at half time and gave Nigeria more possession of the ball. He tightened things up in midfield to give shield to Nigeria defence. 6/10

Tyronne Ebuehi: Proved he can claim his ticket to be at Russia ahead of Shehu. Showed surprising strength, joined the attack to worry England defensively 6/10

Oghenekaro Etebo: Came on at half time and the midfield regained it’s shape. He contributed to a quality and solid Super Eagles midfield in the second half. 6/10

Ahmed Musa: Came in for a flabby Victor Moses. Musa’s pace immediately electrified the arena. Pushed the attack and was always ready for the ball. 5.5/10

Kelechi Iheanacho: Very little time to have an impact. Fresh legs brought but no service to impact proceedings. 4/10

Kenneth Omeruo: Substituted for Balogun, and immediately made a good case for why Rohr should not only take him to Russia, but should also elevate him back into the starting eleven. 6/10

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