The injury of Odion Ighalo in recent times have provided Genort Rohr with headaches ahead of the Super Eagles visit to Johannesburg to take on the Bafana-Bafana team of South Africa in the qualifying round of matches for the 2019. The in-form striker suffered injury in his club side’s 2-2 draw with Tianjin Quanjin with the Super Eagles player limping off barely 17 minutes. Genort Rohr already strained by the absence of big names such as first choice goalkeeper Francis Uzoho, Wilfred Ndidi, Ogenyi Onazi and John Obi Mikel will have to make a huge tactical decision on who to field to field in the number 9 role.
According to the media speculations, current captain Ahmed Musa, Kelechi Ihenacho and Isaac Success have all emerged as the top contenders to lead the Super Eagles attacking line.
Ahmed Musa comes into contention based on his club side experience CSKA Moscow and Leicester City, as well as his recent exploits in the Russia 2018 World cup. The former Leicester and CSKA footballer proved his worth in the number 9 role by reward Genort Rohr with not only his first goal in the world cup but his first and only victory in the outing. His pace with and without ball will be suited against the South African side that play open and attacking football. Ahmed Musa pace and ability to run in between defender could be the perfect dream for Alex Iwobi who enjoys releasing a through ball in the final third.
While Ahmed Musa has the pace, Kelechi Ihenacho has the power and technique. The Leicester city footballer who is tagged “the player with the lethal left foot” also brings to the table goals in the position with powerful and accurate attempts at goal. Ihenacho is more or less an instinct driven player who prefers to try the impossible if his mind sends the message to him. Ihenacho also featured in the centre-forward role with Ahmed Musa and proved to be support due to his high agility and energy. Prior to the World Cup, the Leicester city man during his days at the Etihad stadium, dazzled in the number 9 role for the then Manchester City boss Manuel Pellegrini as he pushed Wilfred Bony down the pecking order.
Iheanacho could still reciprocate such feats if present with the opportunity, though for a player who has not feature for Rohr in Super Eagles last two qualifying round of games, his chances could be slim.
Isaac Success comes in as the possible third options for Genort Rohr despite being a recognized centre-forward. The Watford player is a standard Striker, but struggles for consistency at club level as he plays bit-part role. Isaac Success is barely earning his call to the National team and t will really take something special for Genort Rohr to immediately feature him in a crunch game against South African side. With the current nature of absenteeism affect his side in virtually all department, the German tactician might be conservative and avoid taking risk.
Genort Rohr already knows the quality and the level of dynamic football displayed by the South African side. The Bafana-Bafana side stunned Nigeria 2-0 in 2017, and Genort Rohr paralyzed by the absence of his shot-stopper, midfield enforcer and lethal hit-man in hostile territory will be expected to feature players with the energy to defend the ball when not in possession and also the pace for attack, and that puts Ihenacho and Musa in contention. Considering the nature of South African football pitch, a pacey centre-forward is much preferred as counter attack will be the other of the day. Media outlet based on Injury situation of the Nigerian team had predicted that the German tactician could revisit the 3-5-2 formation previously deployed in the World Cup, and this could mean Ihenacho and Musa could partner.