Nigeria, one of Africa’s five representatives at next month’s 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia stand the risk of a possible burnout after subjecting its players to incessant trips during their last phase of preparation.
The Super Eagles regrouped on Monday, May 21 at Le Meridien Hotel, Uyo, their home during the group stage of their qualification campaign and spent six days in the Southern city.
The team later moved to Port Harcourt on Saturday, May 26 ahead of a much criticised friendly game against Congo Democratic Republic on Monday, May 28.
Nigeria drew the game with the central Africans 1-1, producing a less convincing display.
Head coach Gernot Rohr then led his stars to the Nation’s capital city, Abuja on Tuesday where they were expected to meet with the country’s President, a meeting subsequently postponed till Wednesday.
“You know that young people like to move; and when you move all the time, you can learn some things and you’re not bored,” Rohr told www.aclsports.com when asked if the schedule would not affect the team.
“If you’re in the same place for three weeks, it can be frustrating so I think it is interesting (especially for those based in Europe) to see how the passion in the country is and how the expectations of Nigerians are and to have contact with the fans.”
“I think that it is interesting not to stay only in an isolated place,” added the German trainer.
Nigeria’s World Cup-bound team were eventually received by the country’s President, Muhammad Buhari on Wednesday morning in Abuja from where they left for London, venue of Saturday’s friendly against England.
Nigerian President Muhammad Buhari met with @NGSuperEagles players and officials today before the team left for London.
— ACLSports (@acl_sports) May 30, 2018
After the friendly against England, the team will then proceed to Austria for their final phase of preparation for the World Cup which includes a friendly against the Czech Republic in Vienna on June 6.
The Super Eagles of Nigeria will kick off their 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia campaign on Saturday, June 16 against Croatia in Kaliningrad.