Head coach of the Nigerian national football team, Gernot Rohr, has stated that Sparta Rotterdam of Holland shot-stopper, Maduka Okoye, is not the first choice goalkeeper for the Super Eagles. Rohr noted that there is still too much work ahead for Okoye, and opined that hard work is the only route to becoming the first-choice goalkeeper for the three times African champions.
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Maduka Okoye, 21, has been impressive this season for club and country with four clean sheets so far for his club and impressive displays in the last four games of the Super Eagles. The likes of Daniel Akpeyi, Ikechukwu Ezenwa, Dele Alampasu, have not had playing time due to Okoye’s brilliance in goal, but Rohr has insisted the position is not his yet.
‘All the goalkeepers in the team have been the first choice for some time and now it’s Okoye’s turn. He has to work really hard to hang on to the position because the others are eager to be there. So it is not his own yet. He has done well with his club and that’s what you need to be in our team.’
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However, Okoye has attributed his recent form to hard work and trust in his development process as a young footballer.
‘I think hard work is always paying off, it’s just a matter of time and a matter of God’s planning and timing. That’s why I trusted my process and kept on doing my thing and will continue to do it. It’s important that I am in a good position with my team after a difficult start to the season for us. The last few months have been amazing for me and the squad so I just want to help the team and achieve our goals.’
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