Having been appointed as an assistant to the national team’s German handler earlier in the year, Joseph Yobo’s coaching bow was halted by Covid-19 in March, but it can finally take-off against Algeria on Friday
Retired Nigeria international Joseph Yobo will take charge of his first game as Gernot Rohr’s assistant when the three-time continental champions take on Algeria in Friday’s international friendly billed for Austria.
The former Everton and Super Eagles defender was appointed to the role by the Nigeria Football Federation in February.
The 40-year-old was expected to make his managerial bow against Sierra Leone a month later. However, that did not materialise as the coronavirus pandemic placed all football-related activities on hold.
Football has since returned, though, with the Super Eagles billed to face the North African duo of Algeria and Tunisia within the next five days ahead of their Afcon-qualifying games against Sierra Leone next month.
This has presented Yobo – who captained the Super Eagles to a triumphant 2013 Africa Cup of Nations outing in South Africa – with the chance to take his place for the first time in the technical crew dugout.
The former Olympique Marseille defender flew with the officials to Austria and trained with the team for the first time on Tuesday evening and afterwards declared he is thrilled to begin another ‘chapter’ in the beautiful game.
“New Chapter. Super Eagles head coach Gernot Rohr and his assistant coach,” Yobo wrote on Instagram.
Yobo remains one of Nigeria’s most celebrated defenders, participating in three Fifa World Cups and six Africa Cup of Nations finals. He is the country’s joint most-capped player, alongside the equally legendary Vincent Enyeama.
At club level, Yobo won two Turkish Cups as well as one Super Lig title and is Everton’s second player to feature in all 38 Premier League games without missing a single minute, during the 2006-07 season under David Moyes.