'Aribo, Balogun Do Not Know Lagos At All' - Rohr On NFF's Decision To Hold AFCONQ In Surulere
Published: February 22, 2021
'Aribo, Balogun Do Not Know Lagos At All' - Rohr On NFF's Decision To Hold AFCONQ In Surulere
Manager Gernot Rohr has commented on the decision of the Nigeria Football Federation to hold next month's 2021 Africa Cup of Nations qualifier against Lesotho at the Teslim Balogun Stadium in Surulere, Lagos.

The German football tactician noted that some of the European-born players he is planning to call up for the game, including Glasgow Rangers duo Leon Balogun and Joe Aribo, are not familiar with the country's commercial capital.

The Chairman, Lagos State Sports Commission, Mr. Sola Aiyepeku has assured Rohr that the pitch will be match-ready before the game next month, adding that the grass is already lush-green and there are just little finishing touches to be put in place before the qualifying match.

"Yes, it's official. We will play in Lagos against Lesotho on March 30, for the sixth and final day of qualifying for the next AFCON. It will probably be in an empty stadium," Rohr told French radio station Europe1 (via Football 365).

"Teams are working on the pitch. I inspected it all. The traffic in Lagos is terrible, but we are promised an escort between our hotel and the stadium, or even to close the road to allow us to avoid traffic jams.

"The other day, I took an hour to make the trip. It's a bit much before a game."
 
On if the players are looking forward to returning to Lagos, Rohr said : "The idea of ​​playing in Lagos is good for the players.

"Some do not know this city at all, this is the case of Leon Balogun. Like Aribo or others, who were born in Europe.

"They will discover this crazy city, with 19 million inhabitants. It is important that we have security, escorts to move around and a good pitch to play. We are working on all these aspects."

Nigeria lead Group L of 2021 AFCON qualifying with eight points despite playing back-to-back draws with Sierra Leone in November 2020.

Ifeanyi Emmanuel

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