Brazil great Pele famously predicted that an African country would win the World Cup before the turn of the 21st century, but 21 years after the set date, the continent is still waiting for its first World cup winner
Super Eagles manager, Gernot Rohr, has said it would be difficult for Nigeria or any other African country to win the World Cup.
Tunisia are the first African nation to represent the continent at the biggest sporting competition in the world in 1978.
Since then the number has increased with Morocco the first African nation to qualify for the knockout stages of the World Cup in 1986.
During this period Pele said an African nation would win the biggest sporting prize on earth before 2000. But the best an African side has managed is a quarter-final place.
Cameroon’s squad of 1900 led by Roger Milla was the first African Nation to reach the quarter-finals. Nigeria’s golden generation could not go past the round of 16 at the 1994 and 1998 World Cup.
Senegal stunned the world on their first appearance in 2002, but their run was ended by Turkey in the quarter-finals.
Ghana were the closest to breaking the jinx at South Africa 2010, but Asamoah Gyan could not convert a last-minute penalty in their quarter-final clash against Uruguay, and they subsequently lost the penalty shootout.
Africa’s continuous failure at the World Cup is disappointing, but Rohr has now revealed the reasons for their shortcomings on the biggest stage.
“We are not ready to win the world cup, for several reasons,” Rohr told NewsCentral. First reason for me is the organisation.
General organisation. Still a lot of problems for travelling, for preparation of the games specifically. Like here we will play in Lagos. Ten years no match of the Super Eagles, so we know that there’s no tradition here.
The former Bordeaux manager also said the lack of African players at top clubs in Europe means it would be difficult for the countries to win the biggest sporting prize on earth.
“France is the champions at the moment, where they are playing? They are playing in PSG, Bayern Munich. Four of them are world champions at their clubs also.
“So when you have so many of your players from your countries playing in the best clubs, so the probability that you also have one of the best teams in the world is very big.
“So what we have in Nigeria for example, we have our players in Fulham, in West Bromwich. It’s not Bayern Munich, Liverpool, Manchester United or Barcelona. But the other ones they have their players there.
“So it would be a miracle if we actually win the world cup, Rohr concluded.