World Cup Qualifiers: Cape Verde draw was like a win – Rohr

Cape Verde vs Nigeria, line up, where to watch, other updates

Nigeria coach, Gernot Rohr, has said their draw with Cape Verde in a World Cup qualifier on Tuesday was like a win.

The Super Eagles needed to avoid defeat in the game to seal a place in the play-offs.

Rohr’s men took an early lead through Napoli star Victor Osimhen in the first minute, before Stopira levelled matters four minutes later after profiting from an assist from Kenny Santos.

The intense fixture produced no other goals, and that result was enough to send the West Africans into the final round – where Africa’s representatives would be selected.

“First of all, sometimes, a draw can be like a victory. That was the case today. Because we wanted to qualify, we knew that a draw is already qualification,” Rohr told the media.

“It was not an easy game because Cape Verde have a good technical team and they scored a goal in a moment when we believed we had the match in the hands.

“We missed a lot of chances in the first half, and I think we deserved to score a second goal.

“That did not come, and we had to defend, and the players did it very well.”

The former Gabon and Burkina Faso tactician also opened up on the kind of advancement he wants in his team before the commencement of the third round.

“The improvement I want to see is for us to exploit the opportunities we have to score, to be more effective defensively and also play quicker from behind – it is still too slow from behind for me.

“Our central defenders still take much time to take the ball forward. So, we have to work on that.

“We have 13 points from six matches, it’s not a bad result – because we have two more points above the team that placed second [Cape Verde].

“Now we have to be optimistic as we have time to prepare for Afcon. Some of our players are coming back from injury, so let’s give them time, they will do better and better.”

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