Technical Adviser Gernot Rohr has released a list of 24 Nigeria senior players who will do battle for the three points in a 2019 Africa Cup of Nations qualifier against Seychelles in Victoria on September 7.
At a world press conference in Lagos on Friday, Rohr, flanked by NFF 1st Vice President Seyi Akinwunmi and Executive Board Member Aisha Falode, unveiled a list of three goalkeepers, eight defenders, six midfielders and seven forwards. He also put four other players, including former U17 World Cup-winning captain Musa Muhammed, on standby.
The three goalkeepers are those who made the final cut for the FIFA World Cup finals in Russia in the summer, but the defence has two new boys in England–based Semi Ajayi and Germany–based Jamilu Collins, while Olaoluwa Aina, overlooked for the World Cup, has been recalled.
Another former U17 World Cup–winning captain, Kelechi Nwakali, is the new face in the middle, just as France–based Samuel Kalu is the new man upfront. Henry Onyekuru, who got injured before the World Cup, is also recalled.
Team Administrator Dayo Enebi Achor told thenff .com on Friday that the invited players are expected to fly directly to Seychelles, arriving on Monday, 3rd September, while the one player (goalkeeper Ikechukwu Ezenwa) and team officials travelling from Nigeria will fly into Victoria on Sunday, September 2.
All three points in the Matchday 2 encounter are important for the Super Eagles, having lost their opener to the qualifying campaign at home to South Africa 14 months ago.
THE FULL LIST
Goalkeepers: Francis Uzoho (Deportivo La Coruna, Spain); Ikechukwu Ezenwa (Enyimba FC); Daniel Akpeyi (Chippa United, South Africa)
Defenders: Olaoluwa Aina (Torino FC, Italy); Semi Ajayi (Rotherham United, England); Bryan Idowu (Lokomotiv Moscow, Russia); Chidozie Awaziem (FC Porto, Portugal); William Ekong (Udinese FC, Italy); Leon Balogun (Brighton & Hove Albion, England); Kenneth Omeruo (CD Leganes, Spain); Jamilu Collins (SC Padeborn 07, Germany)
Midfielders: Ogenyi Onazi (Trabzonspor FC, Turkey); Wilfred Ndidi (Leicester City, England); Oghenekaro Etebo (Stoke City FC, England); John Ogu (Hapoel Be’er Sheva, Israel); Kelechi Nwakali (FC Porto, Portugal); Joel Obi (AC Chievo Verona, Italy)
Forwards: Ahmed Musa (Al Nassar FC, Saudi Arabia); Kelechi Iheanacho (Leicester City, England); Simeon Nwankwo (Crotone FC, Italy); Henry Onyekuru (Galatasaray SK, Turkey); Odion Ighalo (Changchun Yatai, China); Alex Iwobi (Arsenal FC, England); Samuel Kalu (Bordeaux FC, France)
Standby: Uche Agbo (Standard Liege, Belgium), Stephen Eze (Lokomotiv Plovdiv, Bulgaria); Musa Muhammed (HNK Gorica, Croatia); Blessing Eleke (FC Luzern, Switzerland)