GERNOT ROHR SPEAKS OF HIS RESPECT FOR NIGERIAN PLAYERS
Super Eagles coach Gernot Rohr says his memorable experience working with former Nigeria international Victor Agali at French Club OGC Nice was one of the reasons he decided to take up the Nigeria job.
Agali played under Rohr at French Ligue 1 club OGC Nice in the 2004-2005 season after moving from Bundesliga club Schalke 04, where he spent three seasons.
Recollecting on his time with Agali at OGC Nice, Rohr recalled how the former forward’s hat-trick secured an amazing win against a star-studded Monaco side in 2004.
“He (Agali) was my player,” Rohr told reporters in Lagos. “He played in Germany and I had him in Nice in France. Agali is one of the persons who gave me a good image about Nigerian players.
“I remember when Agali scored a hat-trick in the derby against Monaco. The game was like the rich club against the poor club and we were the poor club.
“Monaco were 3-0 up. They had Didier Deschamps and also had quality players. They had qualified for the final of the 2004 UEFA Champions League. We had the smallest budget in the league.
“So, they were leading 3-0 after 66 minutes but Agali scored a hat-trick in 15 minutes before we scored a fourth goal to win 4-3.
“It was a wonderful emotion for me. With that, I am happy again to be with Nigerian players. Now we have a good team and I think qualifying for Russia though will be difficult but I am very optimistic.