FIFA World Cup 2018: Nigeria coach Gernot Rohr says Iceland will face the heat in their Group D clash

Nigeria are hoping the temperature will work in their favour in the southern Russian city, where the mercury is expected to still be topping 30 Celsius.

Daniel Hicks June 21, 2018 22:19:03 IST
FIFA World Cup 2018: Nigeria coach Gernot Rohr says Iceland will face the heat in their Group D clash

Volgograd: Nigeria coach Gernot Rohr says that his side are looking to turn up the heat on Iceland in a sweltering Volgograd on Friday as they bid to keep their World Cup campaign alive.

The Super Eagles must avoid defeat after opening Group D with a 2-0 loss to Croatia, while Iceland managed a surprise 1-1 draw with Argentina.

FIFA World Cup 2018 Nigeria coach Gernot Rohr says Iceland will face the heat in their Group D clash

File image of Nigeria team. Reuters

And Nigeria are hoping the temperature will work in their favour in the southern Russian city, where the mercury is expected to still be topping 30 Celsius.

The African players should be more acclimatised to the hot conditions than their northern opponents who hail from just outside the Arctic Circle.

Rohr said they will use any advantage they can.

"It will again be an away game for us, they will have 20,000 fans here so let's have a little advantage with the temperature," the German coach told reporters at the Volgograd Arena on Thursday.

Defeat would see Nigeria become the third African side after Morocco and Egypt to be dumped out after just two group matches, and Rohr hit back at a reporter when asked if a loss might see his job on the line.

"We will not lose this game so I do not answer this question. You can ask this question again after the game, but I will tell you we will not lose," he said.

Nigeria are the youngest squad in Russia and Rohr said the experience would see them return much stronger for the next World Cup in Qatar.

'A team for 2022' 

"We have John Obi Mikel who is still a very good player and we have Victor Moses and they are well known everywhere.

"But when you have such young players what you have is a team for 2022. They will get better and better.

"We are (ranked) about 50 in the world, Iceland are top 20, I think, Croatia top 12 and Argentina top eight.

"When I see the matches are so difficult then we have to learn also it is not finished after this World Cup for us. We want to improve, we want to learn.

"When you are the youngest already it is not possible perhaps to be already the best."

Rohr reiterated that he thought his side had been unlucky to lose their opener and had played well, so spirits in the camp remained high.

"We are ready for this match and we are united, we are working like a team and living like a family.

"You can't always win. They did a good match against Croatia.

"We had 47 percent possession of the ball, we had 14 shots on the goal, they only had 12. They scored two goals but I think we deserved a draw."

-AFP

Click here for full coverage of FIFA World Cup 2018

Click here to view the full schedule of FIFA World Cup 2018

Click here to view the points table of FIFA World Cup 2018

Updated Date:

Find latest and upcoming tech gadgets online on Tech2 Gadgets. Get technology news, gadgets reviews & ratings. Popular gadgets including laptop, tablet and mobile specifications, features, prices, comparison.

also read

Champions League: Achraf Hakimi to miss Inter Milan's opening game after testing positive for COVID-19
Sports

Champions League: Achraf Hakimi to miss Inter Milan's opening game after testing positive for COVID-19

Inter host Bundesliga side 'Gladbach at the San Siro in Group B on Wednesday evening as Antonio Conte's team look to bounce back from a 2-1 derby defeat to AC Milan at the weekend.

FIFA World Cup 2022 qualifiers: Lionel Messi's first-half penalty fires Argentina to 1-0 win over Ecuador in opening game
Sports

FIFA World Cup 2022 qualifiers: Lionel Messi's first-half penalty fires Argentina to 1-0 win over Ecuador in opening game

The breakthrough came after a reckless challenge by Pervis Estupinan sent Lucas Ocampo sprawling in the box, with Messi stepping up to lash home his 71st international goal.

Nigeria declares 24-hour curfew in Lagos as violence flares during protests
World

Nigeria declares 24-hour curfew in Lagos as violence flares during protests

Protests that began 12 days ago over abuses by the police's loathed Special Anti-Robbery Squad have spiraled dramatically. Around 18 people have died in clashes reported between protesters and assailants wearing civilian clothes