ROAD TO RUSSIA: 10 Players Who Could Miss Super Eagles World Cup Party

ROAD TO RUSSIA: 10 Players Who Could Miss Super Eagles World Cup Party

As Nigeria’s preparations for the 2018 FIFA World Cup in Russia continue, some players who have been part of the squad could miss out of the main show next year. Completesportsnigeria.com’s JOHNNY EDWARD picks out 10 Super Eagles players who could be watching the Russia 2018 World Cup action from their couches next summer if they do not step up their game…

1. AHMED MUSA

Both with the Super Eagles and at club level with Leicester City, Ahmed Musa has lost his place in the first team squad and it will take more than his experience with the Super Eagles and his blistering pace on the flanks to earn him a seat on the flight to Russia with Gernot Rohr’s squad.

Musa has found game time hard to come by at club level and Leicester City’s new manager Claude Puel has even said he does not know what the former CSKA Moscow winger still has a future at the King Power Stadium. The January transfer window will offer Musa a route to seek first team action elsewhere to compete for a place in the Super Eagles star-studded attack for the World Cup.

2. BROWN IDEYE

Since providing that assist for Kelechi Iheanacho to score his first goal in the World Cup qualifier against Zambia in Ndola, Brown Ideye has been on the fringes and is now on the verge of missing out on the World Cup party in Russia.

The Tianjin TEDA striker was sensationally dropped from the preliminary squad for the 2014 World Cup but earned a recall to the team two years later, featuring in three games (against Mali, Luxembourg and Zambia).

Ideye scored four goals in 14 games in the Chinese Super League but his fallout with former coach Lee Lim-Saeng saw him demoted to the reserves where he barely featured. A move back to Europe coupled with some brilliant performances could convince the handlers, who are still in search of a back-up striker for Odion Ighalo, that he (Ideye) deserves a place at least in the preliminary squad.

3. DANIEL AKPEYI

He is considered to be the second choice goalkeeper after Carl Ikeme but Daniel Akpeyi has failed to impress with his performances and also failed to take his chance when called up to man the sticks for the Super Eagles.

The Chippa United goalkeeper may battle with Dele Alampasu and possibly Dele Aiyenugba if invited for the final goalkeeper slot.
Francis Uzoho and Ikechukwu Ezenwa look certain to make the list.

4. UCHE AGBO

The Standard Liege defender has not featured for the Super Eagles since he has been called up to the squad a year ago. That underlines how he is regarded.

Despite featuring regularly in the Belgian Jupiler League, breaking into the first team squad of the national remains a tough task for Agbo and that could ruin his chances ahead of the World Cup.

5. KENNETH OMERUO

The Kasimpasa defender lost his place in the heart of the Super Eagles defence and had not been considered until he was called in as a replacement for the injured Ogenyi Onazi for the last two games.

Omeruo’s performance against Argentina in a 3-5-2 formation was solid. With coach Gernot Rohr already satisfied with the trio of William Troost-Ekong, Leon Balogun and Chidozie Awaziem the battle for the final place for a centre half will be between Agbo and the 2013 African Cup of Nations winner, Omeruo.

omeruo-super-eagles-completesportsnigeria.com

Kenneth Omeruo in action for Super Eagles.

6. HENRY ONYEKURU

Despite his rich vein of scoring form for Anderlecht, Henry Onyekuru may be left out of the Super Eagles final squad for the World Cup in Russia.

This is because of the quality of players he is up against in his position.

The 20-year-old will compete with the likes of Victor Moses, Alex Iwobi, Moses Simon, Kelechi Iheanacho, Ahmed Musa, Odion Ighalo, Anthony Nwakaeme and Kayode Olanrewaju for spots in the attack. And with Onyekuru not getting enough playing time to showcase his talent with the Super Eagles, Gernot Rohr may not take a gamble on him.

7. KAYODE OLANREWAJU

Since he signed up for Manchester City and was shipped out on loaned to Girona in Spain, Kayode Olanrewaju has failed to hit the ground running in terms of goals in LaLiga.

Olanrewaju has only seen 12 minutes of international action since he made his debut for the Super Eagles in their 2-0 loss to South Africa in a 2019 African Cup of Nations qualifier.

Odion Ighalo is the Eagles first choice striker for the World Cup barring injuries so Olanrewaju still has the likes of Kelechi Iheanacho and Anthony Nwakaeme to contend with.

8. MIKEL AGU

Mikel Agu has made four substitute appearances for the Super Eagles since he made his debut in June against South Africa and has not been convincing in those games. With John Ogu’s performance in the two games against Algeria and Argentina, in that same role, the Bursaspor defensive midfielder’s place in the World Cup squad is under threat.

9. OGHENEKARO ETEBO

Since he shone in Nigeria’s 3-1 win over Algeria in Uyo, Oghenekaro Etebo has struggled to replicate the form that saw him make the headlines.

Etebo possesses a great bursr of pace that can power any midfield but will that be enough to displace his captain, Mikel Obi? No. He got his chance to play himself back into reckoning against Algeria but Etebo looked lost playing in the advanced midfield role.

10. ISAAC SUCCESS

If fit Isaac Success is one forward who would give Odion Ighalo a good fight in the striking role. But the Watford star who has been ruled out until he new year is not likely to make the Super Eagles preliminary squad.

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COMMENTS

WORDPRESS: 32
  • Ahmed Musa is number one
    He need to move to a club he can command regular shirt for him to have any chance of going to Russia

  • Pls, the couch should include Henry in his plan oo. The guy is just too good 2 be left out.

  • Ahmed Musa, Kenneth Omeruah will have to be dropped.

  • That onyekuru guy must go to world cup cos he’s too good to be left out of the squad

  • It will be amistake to leave henry onyekuru.The guy is better than simon and I headacho

  • vincent Onuigwe 2 weeks

    we need kenneth pls

  • Paschal 2 weeks

    I didnt see a certain Anthony Nwakaeme in the list. Are you implying that guy will go to the world cup? That will come as a rude shock indeed. Secondly I think that if Joel Obi happens to be fit and is called up as Rohr has suggested, the place of John Ogu will be seriously threatened. Reason is because Joel is an extremely quick box to box midfielder, playing in a more competitive league than Ogu and if hes in good form I wont even be surprised if he displaces an established name like Ogenyi Onazi.

  • Paschal 2 weeks

    As for Akpeyi, theres no need waiting till world cup before dropping him. He shouldnt be allowed to play any match in Nigeria’s colours even if that match is a friendly against a primary school. Also if Idowu and Aina are fit, I suggest Echiejile should bid the Super Eagles goodbye let him be replaced by faster left full backs.

  • Ifeanyi 2 weeks

    Ahmed musa, Etebo, Onyekuru and Omeruo will make the team to the World Cup.This guys are very talented Especially musa and Etebo they can wreck the opponent. What they need is to be regular in their Club’s. Ahmed musa need to change club by January so he can get playing time.

  • As for goalkeeper we need Austin Ejide I watch him live here in Israel Yesterday That guy is the best we av now

  • Patrick 2 weeks

    J obi of Toronto in Italy is better than Mikel agu. He will compliment Mikel obi and others. Rather than call strikers from Israel I will prefer Henry and Nigerian strikers that are performing well in Denmark, Holland and Belgium. We are going to play Argentina and Croatia not Zambia or Algeria.

  • Patrick 2 weeks

    J obi plays for Torino in Italian league. He can compete with the world class midfielders that will play for Croatia in our first game. He is better than Mikel ago and etebo.

  • Amongst all Onyekuru must make the cut, the guy is good

  • nguatiga Ernest 2 weeks

    Nigerian coach should chose who he preferred that he will work hard to give him the good result he want for the world cup not all about my brother or my uncle you must go with even Buhari who is the President of this country being uncharged of everything but if his brother didn’t performed well let the coach dropped him and go whom performance is good enough to go pls Nigerians let allowed the coach to his perfect joy pls tanx u all I wish our super eagle good luck.

  • Henry is still ok

  • Henry onyekuru among d 3 best attacking players we have now

  • Pls drop mr akpei the funny man looking at aguero

  • Neo 2 weeks

    I will add Anthony Nwakaeme to the list.
    However Rohr still needs to take a look at Paul Oniachu (The Siege Tower)!!!!

    I think he will be a great addition to the team especially when we could not get Tammy Abraham.

  • WE SHOULD NOT HOPE ON VICTOR MOSES BECAUSE IT IS POSSIBLE INJURY CAN SET IN WE CAN ALL SEE HOW GOOD IWOBI IS GETTING ALL BECAUSE OF COMPETITION BETWEEN HIM AARON SAMUEL OF CSKA AND SIMON MOSES SO ROHR SHOULD ALSO CREAT COMPETITION FOR MOSES.

  • MUSA SHOULD BE DROPPED WE STILL HAVE DESSERS,DENIS,OGBECHE,ADEGBENRO AND ALL OTHERS

  • IF NIGERIA IS ELIMINATED FROM THE WC IN THE GROUP STAGE THE BLAME SHOULD GO TO ROHR WHY I SAID THAT IS BECAUSE FOR ALMOST A MONTH NOW HE HAS BEING ON ONLY KEVIN AKPOGUMA WHO DOES NOT EVEN HAVE INTEREST WHILE THE LIKES OF DOMINIC LORFA,CYRIEL DESSERS,RYAN SANUSI,AND OTHERS WHO WILL FREELY WANT TO PLEGDE THEIR ALLIGENCE TO NIGERIA.

  • SIMON AND HENRY ARE EQUAL.

  • All the players that was mentioned here shouldn’t be part of the team to Russia especially Akpeyi and Ezenwa.

  • KAYODE AND ALUKO SHOULD BE OBSERVED ALSO ADEGBENRO AND OGBCHE,ETEBO SHOULD BE INCLUDED,AKPEYI SHOULD BE FIRED OR BANNED FOR GOOD IF POSSIBLE,EZIHIBUE AND ONUACHU SHOULD BE INVITED.

  • Polycarp odo 1 day

    Well said by all but remember club football and national team football are differnt. Onyekuru and mikel agu have done well for clubs and failed in super eagles. Rohr is looking for akpoguma b/c he lacks faith in omeruo and agbo. The greatest disservice will be to drop ebuehi, who has performed better than aina. Among ebuehi, aina,abdullahi, idowu and echiejile, echiejile should be dropped. Also, ogu has done better than agu and etebo. Musa is still needed if he changes club and start playing b4 world cup. Both j.obi and success are world cup materials if they fit and play regularly for their clubs. If the coach needs experience upfront, it is either martins or ik. Uche.