Nigeria manager Gernot Rohr is standing by Mikel Agu following what many fans adjudged the midfielder’s lacklustre performance in the 1-0 victory over Zambia in Uyo on Saturday to become the first African country to qualify for Russia 2018 World Cup, Extrasportsnigeria.com reports. Agu was thrown into the match after Ogenyi Onazi got injured in the first half and earned a yellow card within minutes.
He continued with poor passes, poor ball control and frightening styles of tackling opponents. But Rohr insists Nigerian are not being fair in the rating of the Turkey-based player.
He said, “It’s not easy to come into such an important game for a young player. He did his best and he’ll learn from the experience. This is not the time to criticise him; we should encourage him. Agu simply had a difficult game but he will learn.”
Hull City defender Ola Aina made his Nigeria debut when he replaced also injured Elderson Echiejile.
Rohr didn’t need to defend him and instead had kind words for him.
“When Elderson got injured we felt it was time to give Aina his chance. Aina is a very good young player; he did quite well against Zambia. He defended well and got forward when he had to.”