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Award-winning Super Eagles star applauds Peseiro, Rohr but reveals preference for Nigerian head coach

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Super Eagles captain William Troost-Ekong has voiced his preference for an indigenous coach to take charge of the Nigerian national team, Soccernet.ng reports.

Troost-Ekong made his Super Eagles debut under the late Stephen Keshi in 2015 and has since flourished under Gernot Rohr, Augustine Eguavoen, and Jose Peseiro.

The Super Eagles have, however, been without a substantive head coach since the departure of Peseiro on the first of March.

While the Nigeria Football Federation is inclined towards appointing another European coach for the national team, there is a significant section of the populace that demands an indigenous coach for the three-time African champions.

The NFF appears to have flowed in that direction as reports suggest that the football body is set to announce former international Emmanuel Amunike as the new Super Eagles head coach.

Troost-Ekong, who won the best player award at this year’s Africa Cup of Nations, has put to bed any fears that the Super Eagles superstars may not be willing to work with a local coach.

The PAOK Salonika defender insists he is a big fan of a fellow Nigerian leading the coaching crew for the national team.

“I think that will be the ideal situation for our team to be honest,” Troost-Ekong told Eagles FM, as per Daily Trust.

“I said that because I have seen Senegal, for example, what they achieve with their coach. Ivory Coast now, they changed their coach in the middle of the tournament.

“There is something that has to be said about a coach understanding about the culture of a country, players, and daily route having been there before as a player, playing at the AFCON.”

Troost-Ekong’s biggest successes for the Super Eagles have come with a European coach in charge of the team.

With Gernot Rohr, Troost-Ekong won a bronze medal at the 2019 AFCON and plated at the World Cup for the first time.

Troost-Ekong claimed silver at the 2023 AFCON and was named Player of the Tournament with Peseiro in charge.

The former Watford defender maintains he will be willing to work with a foreign coach should the NFF decide to get one for the team.

“But on the other hand, I can’t dismiss having a foreign coach because my experience under Gernot Rohr was so very good. We went to the World Cup and AFCON semi-finals in Egypt,” Ekong added.

“Under Jose Peseiro, there were a lot of criticisms before the tournament and the year leading after it. And for him to take us to the AFCON final, it’s a lot of achievement for him.

“For me, I like to think beyond nationalities and political positions. I like to think whatever decision that will be made will be the best for the team.”

William Troost-Ekong is the first defender to win the AFCON MVP award since Rigobert Song in 2002.

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