Super Eagles coach, Gernot Rohr, and team captain, John Mikel Obi, have both expressed their disappointment over their poor start to the Russia 2018 FIFA World Cup.
The team kicked off their campaign on a bad note as they fell 2-0 to Croatia in their opening game at the Kaliningrad Stadium in Kaliningrad, Russia on Saturday night.
An own goal by Oghenekaro Etebo on 33 minutes and a well-taken penalty by Luka Modric in the 70th minute inflicted the painful loss on the Eagles.
While Rohr was disappointed simply for losing the game, Mikel appeared baffled at the manner by which the team conceded the two goals.
The first goal resulted from a corner headed by Mario Mandzukic that then came off Etebo’s foot and rolled into the net. The second came from a penalty awarded after William Troost-Ekong needlessly tussled with Mandzukic inside the box.
“It’s difficult to explain. We talked about it and considering the fact that we trained on it. It’s four goals conceded now from set-piece,” he said referring also to goals conceded against England and Czech Republic in friendlies.
Speaking also at the post-match conference, Rohr said: “We’re really disappointed we lost this game.
“Croatia were the better team. We could have come back into it in the second half after we started very well before the penalty against us.”
He added: “We’re a young team, we’re learning and I hope in the next game against Iceland we will do much better.”
Rohr’s men, who now sit bottom of Group D, will hope to reboost their chances of surviving the group when they face Iceland in their next game on Friday June 22.
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