AFCON 2021 QUALIFIERS: Coronavirus Delays Rohr’s Return from France to Open Eagles Camp

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Super Eagles Coach, Gernot Rohr

Duro Ikhazuagbe

Super Eagles Franco-German Technical Adviser, Gernot Rohr, who is scheduled to arrive Nigeria today ahead of his wards to begin preparations for the AFCON 2020 qualifier against Sierra Leone is believed to be stranded in France as a result of the coronavirus pandemic.

THISDAY checks revealed yesterday that the gaffer has communicated his inability to return as scheduled to chiefs of the Nigerian federation.

Although none of the NFF officials contacted by THISDAY at the Sunday Dankaro House in Abuja yesterday was willing to confirm Rohr’s travel problems as a result of the virus, reliable sources close to the Coach said his return has been put on hold for now.

It was not however confirmed if the AFCON 2019 bronze winning coach has tested positive to warrant his staying back in France.

Nigeria’s camp for the March 27 clash with Sierra Leone is billed to open on Monday in Asaba, Delta State with almost the entire team coming home from Europe.

Messages to the leadership of the NFF to ascertain whether the duo of Williams Troost Ekong and Ola Aina who ply their trades with Italy based clubs were going to be part of the Eagles to play the crucial AFCON 2021 cracker were yet to be replied before the scoop on Rohr.

Italy has the most cases outside China with more than 10,000 and the entire country has been placed in lockdown.

Some 60 million Italians have been told to stay at home in a bid to stop the spread of coronavirus.

The region of Lombardy, where Milan is located, is at the epicentre of Europe’s worse coronavirus outbreak.

Serie A, along with all sport in Italy, is currently suspended until 3 April, but this does not include Italian clubs or national teams participating in international competitions. In Spain, La Liga games are to be played without fans present until 15 April.

On Tuesday, the Spanish government decided to refuse entry to planes from Italy but UEFA requested an exception on behalf of Roma.

That request was denied by the Spanish government on Wednesday.

The Spanish (AFE) and Italian (AIC) players’ unions have asked UEFA that games between Italian and Spanish teams be suspended.