Rohr Says Will Honor His Contract To “Quit” If Nigeria Loses 2018 World Cup Ticket. Gernot Rohr has promised to resign as Nigeria coach if he fails to guide the team to the 2018 World Cup. This is a requirement of his contract. Rohr’s side are sitting top of the Group B standings after beating Zambia and Algeria in their opening World Cup qualifiers. Their next challenge is a double-header against new Africa Cup of Nations champions Cameroon in late August and early September, potentially decisive clashes in the pool.
The 63-year-old German acknowledges that the Indomitable Lions will be tough opponents, but is adamant that he will walk away from Nigeria if they stumble in the qualifiers.
“If we don’t win the World Cup ticket, for me all I’ll say is goodbye. Though it is difficult against Cameroon, it is a challenge that I am willing to take. However, if I fail, I’ll leave.”
Rohr has been in charge of Nigeria’s national team since August 2016. Nobody saw the appointment of the 63-year-old coming, following the resignation of Sunday Oliseh and the false announcement of Paul Le Guen as coach who rejected the offer.
Rohr was given a clear mandate: ensure the Super Eagles qualify for Russia 2018. Achieving that feat will mean overcoming the so-called ‘Group of Death’ with Algeria, Cameroon and Zambia standing in the way. He got off to a winning start with Nigeria, beating Tanzania 1-0 in an Africa Cup of Nations qualifier that had already been rendered meaningless after Egypt secured the lone qualifying berth from Group G.
More importantly though, Rohr got the Super Eagles off to a winning start in their World Cup qualifiers, recording a tough 2-1 win in Zambia. Nigeria then collected a confident 3-1 victory at home against Algeria. The six points, coupled with some surprising results in the other games, leaves Nigeria with an early four-point lead.
After ending his playing career with notable European clubs including Bayern Munich and Bordeaux in 1989, Rohr moved straight into coaching at the club – first as a youth coach, before taking over the senior side. In 2010, he took his first national team position, leading Gabon into the quarter-finals of the Africa Cup of Nations two years later. Since then, stints with Burkina Faso and Niger have followed.
Rohr spent most of his coaching career with French clubs where he had three different spells with French Ligue 1 outfit Bordeaux, also with Creteil, Nice, Ajaccio and Nantes. The highest point of his club coaching career in France was when he took Bordeaux into the UEFA Cup finals when they eventually lost to Bayern Munich in 1996. He was also employed by Tunisian club Etoile du Sahel where he was sacked after one season in charge after finishing outside the Champions League position.