Nigerian former international, Adokiye Amiesimaka, has disagreed on the excuses offered by John Mikel Obi, Victor Moses and Apam Onyekachi for opting out of this month’s international friendly against Venezuela.
The players were on Sunday excused from the game by the Coach of Nigerian national team, Stephen Okechukwu Keshi, for “different reasons.” Chelsea’s midfielder, Mikel, told Keshi he had “family issues” to resolve, but Amiesimaka was not impressed.
“Three of them at the same time? Mere coincidence or stage-managed ploy to miss (the game)? What may the ‘family issues’ (with Mikel)?” Amiesimaka queried. Amiesimaka, who was part of the Nigerian team that won the Africa Cup of Nations in 1980, said the players might have intentionally stayed away from the game as they “considered it not important enough.”
“Chances are that the match is not considered important enough to risk injury for,” Amiesimaka told supersport.com. The former dashing winger, however, refused to blame the players outright for opting out of the game. “I can’t blame them.
There is too much going for them in their clubs to take chances. Fundamental question for the NFF as always is: what kind of insurance cover do national team players have on national assignment? “Don’t be fooled.
Patriotism isn’t synonymous with stupidity. Knowing that your country truly cares is what facilitates patriotism,” he stated. Nigeria will face Venezuela in Miami on November 15 in the second ever clash between both nations.