Following the extension of his contract with the Nigeria Football Federation, NFF, for another two years, Super Eagles coach, Gernot Rohr says he is aiming to win the 2019 African Cup of Nations, AFCON, in Cameroun.
Three-time champions Nigeria missed out on the 2015 and 2017 edition of the AFCON, and trail leaders Libya and South Africa by three points in Group E of the 2019 AFCON qualifiers.
Speaking to football365.fr, Rohr said, ‘’the verbal agreement was reinforced by an official handshake.
‘’We met in Moscow with representatives of the executive committee of the Federation. We agreed on a two-year extension.
‘’I thank my leaders for this trust. Beyond the World Cup, the goal is AFCON 2019. We want to come back and win.’’
The Super Eagles were due to face Seychelles in their next AFCON qualifier in March 2018 but that game has been postponed because of their involvement in the World Cup.
Nigeria first won the AFCON on home soil in 1980, before triumphing in 1994 and 2013.
Rohr still wants to have the former Super Eagles skipper, Vincent Enyeama, in his 2018 FIFA World Cup squad and has opened the doors for the experienced goalkeeper.
While there are reports that Enyeama, who announced his retirement from international football in October 2015, had ruled out a return, Rohr says Enyeama could earn a recall as he faces a goalkeeper crisis after first choice Carl Ikeme was diagnosed with leukemia.
“Coach Rohr had a productive chat with Enyeama and made it clear that he should focus on getting fit and enjoy a playing run,” team spokesperson Toyin Ibitoye told BBC Sport.
“Contrary to local media reports, the professional talks between both of them remains unchanged, there are conditions involved and as long as it’s adhered to, Enyeama stands a World Cup chance.”
The BBC reports that Daniel Akpeyi has failed to impress and his replacement Ikechukwu Ezenwa lacks composure, while young Francis Uzoho is inexperienced.
“It’s very important to respect those who are currently with the team. The likes of Akpeyi, Ezenwa, Alampasu, Uzoho and Ajiboye all need the support of our fans,” Ibitoye added.
“Coach Rohr insists we should not let the talk of Enyeama deprive others of their deserved respect. With these goalkeepers and Carl Ikeme we achieved World Cup qualification.
“We appreciate what Enyeama has done in the past and he also needs our support right now. His experience is good for the country and only coach Rohr has to make the final call when the time comes.”