Super Eagles coach Gernot Rohr says his captain John Obi Mikel will have to undergo rigorous training with the Nigeria national team ahead of the 2018 World Cup, bearing it in mind that the Chinese Super League is not too competitive.
The Tianjin Teda star is set to miss out on the Super Eagles last international break of the 2017-2018 season as he has remained in China to renew his work permit.
Asked if Mikel’s transfer to China is a problem, Rohr told Przegląd Sportowy: ”It might be a problem once, but the level has risen there. Before the World Cup there will be a break to bring the players to a good physical condition.”
The German coach admitted Nigeria have a goalkeeping problem ahead of the mundial, saying : ”It is true. Our problem is Ikeme’s illness (he was diagnosed with leukemia)”.
Prior to Rohr’s appointment as Nigeria coach in 2016, he managed other African teams and has stated that he likes working in Africa.
”I like working in Africa. I coached teams in France for many years and in each of them I had a good relationship with Africans.
”Then I went to Tunisia until I started leading the African team. I enjoyed it because I was doing well,” added Rohr.