Captain Mikel Obi was excluded as Gernot Rohr announced his 23-man Nigeria squad for September’s Africa Cup of Nations qualifier against Seychelles.
Joining injured Mikel on the list of excluded players is veteran left-back Elderson Echiejile as the German tactician stuck to most of the players who featured at the 2018 Fifa World Cup in Russia.
FC Porto’s Kelechi Nwakali has been handed a chance to justify his claim for a place in Super Eagles’ midfield, where he’s joined by usual suspects Ogenyi Onazi, Oghenekaro Etebo, Wilfred Ndidi and Joel Obi.
Talented youngster Henry Onyekuru makes a return to the side having being left out of the World Cup squad, and he’ll battle for a starting berth with Ahmed Musa, Odion Ighalo, Kelechi Iheanacho, Alex Iwobi, Simeon Nwankwo and Samuel Kalu.
The three-time African champions made a false start in the qualifying series – bowing 2-0 to South Africa in Uyo – and they must negotiate their way past the Pirates to resurrect their chances of qualifying for Cameroon 2019.
Meanwhile, Rohr has disclosed that his assistant, Salisu Yusuf, who is under investigations for bribery will not be part of the team for the September 8 showdown.
The Complete Squad
GOALKEEPERS: Francis Uzoho, Daniel Akpeyi, Ikechuwu Ezenwa
DEFENDERS: Leon Balogun, William Troost-Ekong, Chidozie Awaziem, Bryan Idowu, Ola Aina, Jamiu Colllins, Semiu Ajayi, Kenneth Omeruo
MIDFIELDERS: Wilfred Ndidi, Ogenyi Onazi, Joel Obi, John Ogu, Karo Etebo, Kelechi Nwakali
FORWARDS: Ahmed Musa, Odion Ighalo, Simy Nwankwo, Alex Iwobi, Henry Onyekuru, Samuel Kalu, Kelechi Iheanacho
STANDBY: Uche Agbo Stephen Eze Blessing Eleke Musa Mohammed