Home Sports RUSSIA 2018 W/C Qualifier: Nigeria name 23-man squad to face Zambia

RUSSIA 2018 W/C Qualifier: Nigeria name 23-man squad to face Zambia

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Gernot Rohr, the technical adviser (Senior coach) for the Super Eagles of Nigeria have named a 23-man squad for the crucial 2018 World Cup qualifier against the Chipolopolo of Zambia next month.

The Super Eagles host 2012 Africa Cup of Nations winners Zambia in  Uyo on October 7.

If Nigeria win the tie, they will seal a sixth World Cup appearance.

Arsenal forward Alex Iwobi is named again after he was forced to withdraw from September’s two games against Cameroon due to injury.

Group B after four matches

Nigeria 10 points

Zambia 7 points

Cameroon 3 points

Algeria 1 points

Leicester trio of Ahmed Musa, Wilfred Ndidi and Kelechi Iheanacho are also included, while former England youth international Ola Aina could make his long awaited debut.

Experienced China-based duo of captain John Mikel Obi and Odion Ighalo, as well as Chelsea wing-back Victor Moses complete a strong squad.

“I’m happy to be called up again because it’s always a great honour to play for my country,” Ighalo told BBC Sport.

“We know Zambia is a strong team and they will come with full determination in Uyo, we cannot not engage in irrelevant pre-match talking but deliver on the pitch.

“I’ve never played at the World Cup and like my other colleagues we all want to be in Russia, this is like a final for us.”

The Super Eagles are top of Group B with ten points, while Chipolopolo lie second with seven points following a 1-1 draw with Cameroon and home and away triumphs over Algeria.

Three-time African champions Nigeria first appeared at the World Cup in 1994, where they reached the second round. They also played at the 1998, 2002, 2010 and 2014 tournaments.

Nigeria squad:

Goalkeepers

Daniel Akpeyi (Chippa United, South Africa); Ikechukwu Ezenwa (FC IfeanyiUbah); Ayodele Ajiboye (Plateau United FC)

Defenders

William Troost-Ekong (Bursaspor FC, Turkey); Abdullahi Shehu (Anorthosis Famagusta, Cyprus); Leon Balogun (FSV Mainz 05, Germany); Elderson Echiejile (Sivasspor FC, Turkey); Uche Agbo (Standard Liege, Belgium); Chidozie Awaziem (Nantes FC, France); Ola Aina (Hull City, England)

Midfielders

John Mikel Obi (Tianjin Teda, China); Ogenyi Onazi (Trabzonspor FC, Turkey); Wilfred Ndidi (Leicester City, England); Oghenekaro Etebo (CD Feirense, Portugal); John Ogu (Hapoel Be’er Sheva, Israel); Mikel Agu (Bursaspor FC, Turkey)

Forwards

Ahmed Musa and Kelechi Iheanacho (Leicester City, England); Moses Simon (KAA Gent, Belgium); Alex Iwobi (Arsenal FC, England); Odion Ighalo (Chang Chun-Yatai, China); Victor Moses (Chelsea FC, England); Anthony Nwakaeme (Hapoel Be’er Sheva, Israel)

Standby

Dele Alampasu (Cesarense FC, Portugal); Tyronne Ebuehi (ADO Den Haag, The Netherlands); Aaron Samuel (CSKA Moscow, Russia); Afeez Aremu (Akwa United); Ifeanyi Ifeanyi (Akwa United)

(Businessday)

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