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Opinion: Why The Mladen Krstajic I know Won't Last As Super Eagles Manager

Nothing deflates a manager's self-esteem and confidence like reading about the story of his successor while still barking out orders from touchlines. Ask Frank Lampard, Ole Gunnar Solksjaer, and the special one, Jose Mourinho and they will tell you how much they all regretted the timing of their exit.


Love him or loathe him, Rohr occupies the top spot in the long lists of trending topics as far as sports news is concerned in Nigeria today. Even before the second round of the 2022 Qatar World Cup qualifiers had finished, the press had swooped on the Franco-German gaffer like ants on sugar calling for his sack.

His many sins range from poor selections to tactical ineptitude which according to his critics was evident in his late substitution most especially when things got hairy. Although Nigeria eventually qualified for the play-offs after a nervy draw with Cape Verde in Lagos, that feat was not enough to pacify his growing critics.


Then followed by a rumored sack by NFF last week but the country's soccer governing body moved in fast and refuted the claims. However, the vulture has not ceased to circle above Rohr's head with a decent source confirming that agreement has been reached by both parties to pay off Rohr.

A Dutch Manager Not Serbian 

Suddenly, we are up for another managerial merry-go-round and Serbian-born Mladen Krstajic is the man currently being touted as Rohr's successor. The former Partizan Belgrade and Werder Bremen center-back reigned as part of Serbia and Montenegro Famous Four defenders, and his coaching instinct is centered on parading a water-tight rearguard.

His tactical savvy came under severe scrutiny when Serbia lost 5-0 to Ukraine in Euro 2020 qualifiers, and he was also fired by TSC Krstajic in October over poor performance after 10 months in charge. He is regarded as one of the lowly ranked managers in Serbia behind Slavoljub Muslin, Radomir Antić, and Siniša Mihajlović for his inability to get along with club managers.

NFF is Shooting In The Dark

While it can be argued that NFF is broke, and has decided to go for a less flamboyant manager that will reside in Nigeria, Krstajic is not in the class of managers that should tinker with Super Eagles players with egos like the size of Israel. Nigeria is known to excel under Dutch managers, and while Bonfere Jo should never come into the picture, it won't be a bad idea if NFF can comb Holland for Rohr's successor.

Bringing a lowly-rated manager with no track record could be counterproductive to Nigeria's quest to win her fourth AFCON diadem, and most importantly qualify for Qatar 2022 World Cup. Mladen Krstajic, such a superb player but a disappointing manager will only be coming here to boost his lightweight CV rather than better a lot of Nigerian football. But the big question is; does NFF have the money to hire top a brass coach?

Content created and supplied by: kabiyesi (via Opera News )

Jose Mourinho Mladen Krstajic Nigeria Ole Gunnar Solksjaer Rohr

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