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Friendlies: Mikel, Etebo out as 22 players arrive Super Eagles’ camp for training

Abuja – The Super Eagles’ camp at Wroclaw in Poland on Tuesday was a beehive of activities following the arrival of 22 players and the beginning of training sessions.

Nigeria’s Mikel John Obi (C) celebrates with teammates William Ekong (L) and Odion Ighalo after scoring a goal during the 2018 FIFA World Cup qualifying football match between Nigeria and Cameroon at Godswill Akpabio International Stadium in Uyo, southern Nigeria, on September 1, 2017. / AFP PHOTO

The team’s technical and backroom staff, alongside six players had opened the camp on Monday, but the facility exploded into life with the arrival of 16 other players on Tuesday.

These include goalkeeper Francis Uzoho, as well as defenders Kenneth Omeruo, Elderson Echiejile, Stephen Eze, Abdullahi Shehu and Chidozie Awaziem.

The rest are midfielders Joel Obi, John Ogu, Ogenyi Onazi, Uche Agbo and Wilfred Ndidi, as well as forwards Ahmed Musa, Moses Simon, Odion Ighalo, Kelechi Iheanacho and Victor Moses.

According to a statement on Tuesday in Abuja by the Communications Department of Nigeria Football Federation (NFF), Nigeria-based goalkeeper Ikechukwu Ezenwa and South Africa-based Daniel Akpeyi are expected on Wednesday.

It went on to disclose that team skipper Mikel Obi was unlikely to make it to Wroclaw.

The NFF said the former Chelsea FC player had been working hard at renewing his work permit in China, where he plays for Tianjin Teda.

Team Administrator Dayo Enebi Achor said: “We all had been hoping that the renewal would come in good time for him to fly to Poland. As it is now, it is not likely that he would make the trip.”

Midfielder Oghenekaro Etebo is also injured, while Egypt-based Junior Ajayi, was unable to secure visa into Poland.

Ajayi will now fly directly to London for Tuesday’s clash with Serbia in London, England.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the Super Eagles team trained twice on Tuesday.

The same schedule is planned for Wednesday, before Thursday’s training at match time inside the Municipal Stadium in Wroclaw.

Friday’s match is expected to kick off at 8.45 p.m., with Nigeria and Poland on same time zone.

NAN reports further that Friday’s game inside the 43,000-capacity stadium formally opens the first phase of Eagles’ preparation for the 21st FIFA World Cup finals holding in the Russian Federation.

After Tuesday’s game with Serbia in London, the Super Eagles will play a send-forth match against DR Congo in Nigeria, before returning to face England at Wembley June 2.

Four days later, they will come up against the Czech Republic at their final training camp in Austria.

Another friendly game is on the cards before the squad jets out to the World Cup finals on June 11.

NAN reports that Nigeria’s team base camp at the 21st FIFA World Cup finals is located in Yessentuki, Stavropol territory in the southern region of the Russian Federation.(NAN)


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