The Super Eagles camp came alive on Tuesday night as 16 players trained for the first time ahead of the first leg of the crucial doubleheader between Nigeria and Sierra Leone as the 2022 African Cup Of Nations qualifier returns with matchday 3 and 4 in November.
The team trained under the Samuel Ogbemudia Stadium floodlight on Tuesday evening under the watchful eyes of the technical crew led coach Gernot Rohr.
Thirteen outfield player was led by team captain Ahmed Musa and assistant captain Wiliam Troost Ekong while 3 goalkeepers also join the fray with Ikechukwu Ezenwa who was not invited to this match as he could only make the standby list.
Though the team number one goalkeeper to the last Nations Cup, Daniel AkpeyI, is yet to hit the Benin camp there was no official statement from any of the official whether Ikechekwu Ezenwa has been called up to replace Daniel Akpeyi as all effort to get any of the officials to speak on the presence of Ezenwa in the camp prove abortive.
Meanwhile, the team is still expecting the arrival of Victor Osimhen and Samuel Chukwueze, who are key players for the team.
Their late arrival might not be unconnected with the second wave of coronavirus pandemic being witnessed in Europe and are being put in place to minimise the spread of the virus including restricting flight movement as the team handler coach Gernot Rohrs confirms this insinuation when he was speaking with reporters after the training session.
“Most of the players have difficulties in getting flights down here because of the travel restrictions . Some of them travelled via Addis Ababa in Ethiopia which was difficult”. Rohr said.
He, however, expects Victor Osimhen to be in camp on Wednesday, “Osimhen all things being equal should arrive Lagos on Wednesday morning and we expect him in Benin later in the day” the German tactician told reporters present at the team’s training session on Tuesday night.
Others that are still expected are Jamilu Collins, Sheu Abdullahi, Chidera Ejuke, and Paul Onuachu.
The Super Eagles will face the lone stars on Friday 13th of November, 2020 in Benin city Edo state Nigeria by 5 pm local time before playing the same team in Freetown four days later.
Victories for the Nigeria team will seal the 2022 African Cup Of Nations ticket as the team would have gathered a total of unassailable 10 points as two teams will qualify from a group which comprise Nigeria, Lesotho, Sierra Leone and Benin.
The team continues their preparation on Wednesday while Sierra Leone will have a feel of the renovated Samuel Ogbemudia turf on Thursday at about 24hrs to the kick-off of the game.
Here is the full list of players at Tuesday’s night training
William Troost Ekong