The Super Eagles of Nigeria will arrive in Russia tonight for the 21st FIFA World Cup finals after ending their pre-World Cup camp at the Avita Resort in Bad Tatzmannsdorf, Austria – making their sixth appearance in seven finals since their memorable debut in the USA in 1994.
The Eagles have played against Argentina, Poland, Serbia, DR Congo, England and Czech Republic in friendlies, winning two, drawing one and losing three.
“We are okay with the garb of the underdog. But the defeats have done something for us – we have our heads firmly on our shoulders and we are focused.
“Together, we have reviewed the matches and learnt so many lessons. We will approach the World Cup matches differently,” said Rohr.
Nigeria’s first match of the finals is against Croatia on Saturday, with the Eagles logging a balanced record of having won their opening match at the World Cup on two occasions, drawn once and lost twice. On the three occasions, they have not lost their opening match (1994, 1998, 2014), the Eagles have progressed to the Round of 16.
Rohr has only lost one competitive game since taking over the Super Eagles two years ago, and the former German international defender says his wards know how to get their spring back when the whistle goes for kick –off at the Kaliningrad Arena on Saturday.
“We will take it one match at a time. I love this group because we know how to rise to the occasion together. Nigeria will be ready for Croatia.”
The Eagles will use the city of Yessentuki as their base camp for the 2018 FIFA World Cup in Russia, according to Vladimir Vladimirov, the Governor of the Stavropol Territory where Yessentuki is located.