Former Nigeria international, Nduka Ugbade, is confident Deportivo La Coruna 18-year-old goalkeeper Francis Uzoho has what it takes to prove himself in the Super Eagles.Uzoho earned his first Super Eagles call-up as he was part of the 24 players invited by Gernot Rohr for the 2018 FIFA World Cup qualifier against Algeria on November 10 and the international friendly against Argentina on November 14 in Russia.
He was a member of the Golden Eaglets squad, with Ugbade as assistant coach to Manu Garba, that won the 2013 FIFA U-17 World Cup in the United Arab Emirates.
Also invited to the Super Eagles squad and also a member of the 2013 Golden Eaglets winning squad was Chidiebere Nwakali.
Speaking on how Uzoho’s humble beginning and his chances in the Super Eagles, Ugbade remarked that the shot stopper has everything to excel.
“Uzoho is a young lad who has taken goalkeeping very seriously right from his youth team days,” Ugbade told completesportsnigeria.com.
“It was during the Copa Cola that I discovered him. And after sometime when we had the Golden Eaglets, I informed the Chief Coach then, Manu Garba about him and he was invited. He went to the U-17 World Cup in 2013, but didn’t get the chance to be in goal. But I knew he would become a great goalkeeper.
“I believe Uzoho has the qualities to break into the Super Eagles. He is very young and if given the opportunity, he will prove himself.
“As we all know, diamond does not become expensive just like that, it has to go through the normal process before it becomes what it is.
“So it is the same with Uzoho, if properly nurtured, I am confident he will prove himself in the Super Eagles,” Ugbade who won the 1994 Africa Cup of Nations with the Super Eagles told Completesportsnigeria.com.
Ugbade also stated that the invitation of Uzoho and Nwakali to the Super Eagles makes him a fulfilled coach.
He added: “I was so happy when I heard that Uzoho and Nwakali have been invited to the Super Eagles. Such invitation makes my job as their former coach much more fulfilling. If the youth players develop according to the science of the game, it means a brighter future for them, and they will last long in the team at the tender age playing for the senior national team.”