Football

Super Eagles boss: Maduka Okoye is Nigeria’s first-choice goalkeeper

Nigeria goalkeeper Maduka Okoye says he’s ready for the Afcon qualifiers against Sierra Leone and hopes to be between the sticks for the game.

Sparta Rotterdam’s Maduka Okoye is now Nigeria’s first-choice goalkeeper.

This is according to Super Eagles head coach Gernot Rohr, who believed the young shot – stopper has done enough to earn the spot after his impressive displays for the West Africans in recent outings.

“No. 1 is Maduka,” Rohr told ESPN.

“These decisions, I take them with [goalkeeper coach Alloy Agu] because he is a specialist for goalkeeper training.

“Myself and Alloy, we agreed that it’s actually Maduka. We have the experienced [Daniel Akpeyi] doing good matches with this club in South Africa.

“We have the young [Francis Uzoho] coming back after injury, but he has to play also now not only on the bench. We have also [Matthew Yakubu]. There’s a good potential now because this position was a big problem for us so we have more now.”

Rohr also defended Okoye after the Fortuna Dusseldorf of Germany goalie conceded four goals in the 4-4 home draw against Sierra Leone last November.

“You cannot drop a player because you say he plays one bad game,”Rohr added

“It is bad for his confidence.”

The Super Eagles will face neighbours Benin Republic and Lesotho in their final two games of the of 2021 Africa Cup of Nations qualification campaign next month.

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