By Bamidele Boluwaji: Former Super Eagles coach Austin Eguavoen has advised Gernot Rohr and his players that they should not allow the latest FIFA ranking to distract them ahead of the 2018 World Cup holding this summer in Russia, Completesportsnigeria.com reports.
In the latest ranking released on Thursday by the world football governing body, Nigeria dropped one place despite her silver-winning feat at the recently concluded 2018 CAF African Nations Championship (CHAN) in Morocco.
Reacting to the ranking on Friday, the former Sunshine Stars manager advised Rohr to concentrate on his World Cup preparations without allowing anything to distract his focus.
“I don’t know how they came about the ranking but what I will say is that our players and coach Rohr should not allow that to distract them,” Eguavoen told CSN.
“Personally, I want to see Nigeria perform well at the World Cup and that should be the ultimate for every player and the coaches.
“They should see the ranking as a push to do more in their preparation. Ranking at times is just to tell you to do more but if you ask me, I will say the latest ranking will help our players because coming down by one place means they have to work harder and make sure they get back and even do more to improve. So personally for me, the World Cup should be our priority.”
Having ranked 51st in January, Nigeria are now 52nd in the world with 606 points and seventh in Africa.
Nigeria will play some friendly matches next month and the games are expected to help the side improve on the FIFA rankings.