Following the release of Sunday Oliseh’s first overseas-based squad as Super Eagles head coach, Completesportsnigeria.com’s JAMES AGBEREBI profiles all the 18 players for the Africa Cup of Nations qualifier against Tanzania, giving an insight into their abilities and providing the performance chart of each player. Current stats for the new 2015/2016 season sourced by JOHNNY EDWARD…
VINCENT ENYEAMA (LILLE, FRANCE)
Currently the longest-serving Super Eagles player, the ever reliable Vincent Enyeama’s invitation doesn’t come as a surprise as he remains the undisputed number one goalkeeper of the senior national team.
Enyeama was in goal for the Eagles in their 2-0 win against Chad in Kaduna. And he is still Lille’s first choice having kept goal in their two league games so far.
And last season, Enyeama made 38 appearances for Lille in the French Ligue 1.
CLEAN SHEETS: 1
CARL IKEME (WOLVERHAMPTON WANDERERS, ENGLAND)
Carl Ikeme who plies his trade with Championship side, Wolverhampton Wanderers, will be earning his first ever call-up to the Super Eagles.
The 29-year-old Sutton Coldfield-born player, who is contracted to Wolves till 2017, made 33 appearances for Wolves in the 2014/2015 season.
His only appearance in the league this season was against Blackburn at Ewood Park which Wolves won 2-1.
CLUB: Wolverhampton Wanderers
CLEAN SHEETS: 0
LEON BALOGUN (FSV MAINZ 05, GERMANY)
A former player of newly promoted Darmstadt 98 but now with Mainz, Leon Balogun is fast becoming a regular for the Super Eagles after posting impressive performances in his previous outings for the team.
Among some of his games for the Eagles include Mexico (debut) in 2014, Uganda, South Africa and Chad.
Balogun who already has one game under his belt for Mainz this season, scored four league goals in 21 appearances for Darmstadt last season.
CLUB: Mainz 05
KINGSLEY MADU (AS TRENCIN, SLOVAKIA)
Kingsley Madu made his debut for the Super Eagles against Chad in Kaduna and gave a good account of himself, hence his invitation to the team for the Tanzania clash.
So far, Madu has featured in all three of Trencin league games in the new season as well as their Champions League qualifiers.
The former El-Kanemi Warriors player played 15 times for Trencin last campaign, and found the back of the net two times.
CLUB: AS Trencin
GODFREY OBOABONA (CAYKUR RIZESPOR, TURKEY)
One of the experienced players currently with the team, Oboabona’s recent performances with the Super Eagles seem to have left much to be desired.
The player who once wowed most fans with eye-catching displays in the heart of the Eagles defence, now looks a shadow of himself, no thanks to some eratic showings of late.
Oboabona, who was in the books of NPFL side Sunshine Stars, before jetting out of the country for Turkey, made 19 appearances for Rizespor last term, scoring one goal.
WILLIAM TROOST-EKONG (FK HAUGESUND, NORWAY)
This will be William Troost-Ekong’s second invitation to the Super Eagles after making his debut against Chad where he made an appearance.
Ekong, who joined Belgian champions Gent before being loaned out to Haugesund in Norway this summer, gave a good account of himself against the Chadians despite earning his first international cap.
And last season, Ekong was in action for Dordrecht in 22 games. He has played three times for Haugesund in the league.
KENNETH OMERUO (KASIMPASA, TURKEY)
Just like defensive partner, Godfrey Oboabona, Kenneth Omeruo seems to have gone off the boil in the Super Eagles, and his continued invitation to the team has left not a few perplexed.
Still a player of Chelsea FC, Omeruo is yet to appear in the colours of Jose Mourinho’s side since he joined, as he is being loaned out, with his latest destination being Kasimpasa in Turkey, making one appearance for them so far.
Last season, he made 19 appearances for Middlesbrough after he was overlooked in some games by Aitor Karanka.
JOEL OBI (TORINO FC, ITALY)
After showing promise in his debut under coach Samson Siasia, who was former handler of the Super Eagles, Joel Obi has failed to live up to the hype.
He was even invited by former Eagles gaffer, Stephen Keshi, during the team’s preparations for last year’s FIFA World Cup in Brazil, but was later dropped.
Hardly ever fit, Obi made just 11 appearances for Inter Milan last season before he was finally sold to Torino for €2.3M.
(Serie A season yet to kick off)
IZUNNA UZOCHUKWU (FC AMKAR PERM, RUSSIA)
A former player of Midtjylland in Denmark, but now with Russian side Amkar Perm, this is Izunna Uzochukwu’s first call-up to the national team.
A defensive midfielder by trade, Uzochukwu will have to convince a lot of fans about his ability if he hopes to be a regular for the Eagles.
He has featured three times already this season for Amkar Perm, and had 22 appearances for Midtjylland last season.
CLUB: Amkar Perm
OBIORA NWANKWO (ACADEMICA, PORTUGAL)
A member of the 2013 Africa Cup of Nations-winning Super Eagles side under Stephen Keshi, Obiora who is making a return to the team, is yet to justify his past inclusions into the team.
A former Inter Milan player, Obiora now does his business for Academica De Coimbra in Portugal, joining them from Cordoba.
The former junior international saw action 27 times for Academica last season, but failed to register a single goal from his midfield position.
Club: Academica Coimbra FC, Portugal
Goals : 0
LUKMAN HARUNA (ANZHI, RUSSIA)
After a five-year absence from the Super Eagles, Lukman Haruna is making a return to the team and will have to do a lot of convincing to get the trust of football fans.
His last outing with the Eagles was at the 2010 FIFA World Cup in South Africa, where he featured against Argentina and Greece.
Last season, Haruna made just five appearances for Hoverla, but this season, he has already played four games and scored one goal for Anzhi.
Club: Anzhi Makhachkala
Goals : 1
RABIU IBRAHIM (AS TRENCIN, SLOVAKIA)
Once touted as the new Jay-Jay Okocha, Rabiu Ibrahim has failed to live up to expectations as he has been a journeyman since breaking into the scene.
From PSV to Celtic, Kilmarnock and now Trencin it seems he has finally found a settled place where he can showcase his talent. And he has been able to notch up four goals in 17 outings for the club.
His invitation to the Eagles last game against Chad, came as a shock to many. But it is hoped he will finally seize this opportunity and make the creative midfield position his own.
Club: AS Trencin, Slovakia
Goals : 0
AHMED MUSA (CSKA MOSCOW, RUSSIA)
Though a frustrating player sometimes with his catalogue of misses while featuring for the Eagles, Musa is one player who on his day can wreak havoc against any defence, just like what he did against Argentina at last year’s World Cup.
The former Kano Pillars player has been one of the top performers for his club since the new season kicked off as he keeps banging in the goals both in the league and in the Champions League qualifiers.
He was among a handful of Nigerian players who hit double figures for their clubs last season, as he scored 10 goals in 30 league appearances. And this season, he has scored two goals in five matches.
Club: CSKA Moscow
EMEM EDUOK (ESPERANCE, TUNISIA)
One of the revelations of the Nigerian league two seasons ago, Emem Eduok is making a return to the Super Eagles after his debut in a 1-0 win against Ghana in an international friendly match in which he scored the only goal.
Strong, fast and skillfull, Eduok has proved that his performance for Dolphins in the Nigerian league before joining Esperance was not a fluke, as he enjoys regular playing time with the Tunisian giants.
And just of recent, he helped the team to their first win after three defeats in the Confederation Cup group matches, scoring the only goal against Stade Malien in a 1-0 win in Mali.
Club: Esperance ST, Tunisia
Goals : 7
EMMANUEL EMENIKE (AL AIN, UAE)
Emmanuel Emenike is making a return to the Super Eagles after he was left out in their last AFCON qualifer against Chad.
Before experiencing a goal drought, which lasted for a very long time, Emenike was the Eagles vocal point of attack, constantly banging in the goals and emerged as the highest goal scorer at the 2013 AFCON.
After enduring a frustrating 2014/2015 season with Fenerbahce, where he scored four goals in 27 appearances, Emenike moved on loan to Al Ain and was amongst the goals in their Super Cup triumph.
Club: Al Ain
Goals : 2
ANTHONY UJAH (WERDER BREMEN, GERMANY)
Anthony Ujah is no stranger to most Nigerian football followers as he is one of Nigeria’s top players in the German Bundesliga.
Formerly with Mainz 05, Ujah will have to replicate his club form for the Eagles as he has failed to impress in some of the games he has featured, most notably at the FIFA Confederations Cup in Brazil.
He scored 10 goals in 32 appearances for Koln last season, and featured in Bremen’s 3-0 loss to Schalke 04 at the weekend.
Club: Werder Bremen
Goals : 0
SYLVESTER IGBOUN (FC UFA, RUSSIA)
One of the newly invited players in the Super Eagles, Sylvester Igboun will have to prove that he has what it takes to tie down the striker’s position in the team.
Formerly with Midtjylland, Igboun now does his thing with FC Ufa in the Russian league, and has made four appearances, netting once so far.
And last season with Midtjylland, Igboun scored nine goals in 31 appearances.
Age: FK UFA Russia
MOSES SIMON (KAA GENT, BELGIUM)
Simon has featured in a handful of games for the Super Eagles under the reign of Stephen Keshi, but he is yet to win fans over with his skills.
He was part of the Flying Eagles squad to the U-20 World Cup but turned out to be a bench warmer as he was overlooked for games by coach Manu Garba.
Simon contributed his own fair share of goals as Gent won the Belgian league title last season. He was able to score seven goals in 17 appearances.
Goals : 0
NOTE: Stats accurate up until Monday, 17 August, 2015