Super Eagles’ Head Coach, Stephen Keshi, has called up 11 foreign-based professionals for next week’s international friendly match between the Super Eagles and the senior team of Venezuela in Miami, Florida, United States of America.
It would be recalled that the former libero earlier called up 26 home-based professionals who have been battling it out in camp in Abuja since Sunday, from among 15 would be picked for the trip to America. Wednesday’s match at Marlins Park is one of a number of games meant to prepare the two-time African champion for the 2013 Africa Cup of Nations finals in South Africa, starting on January 19. Israel-based goalkeeper, Austin Ejide, a 10-year veteran, tops the list that also include 2010 World Cup star, Obafemi Martins and Newcastle United ace, Shola Ameobi.
Ameobi, cleared to play for Nigeria last year alongside Victor Moses after a long-drawn process, gets his first call and battles for a place upfront with Moses, Ukraine-based Brown Ideye, Martins and a trio of home boys. Surprised call-up is former junior international defender,
Apam Onyekachi, back from injury at Nice FC of France, with Portugal-based defender, Elderson Echiejile, also heading for America. Chelsea FC of England star and Nigeria’s only last-man standing in the Africa Player of the Year race, Mikel Obi, tops a midfield cast that includes former junior international, Raheem Lawal, Ogenyi Eddy Onazi and Nosa Igiebor.
ALL THE FOREIGN-BASED PROS
Goalkeeper: Austin Ejide (Hapoel Be’er Sheva, Israel) Defenders: Elderson Echiejile (FC Braga, Portugal); Apam Onyekachi (Nice FC, France) Midfielders: Mikel Obi (Chelsea FC, England); Nosa Igiebor (Real Betis, Spain); Ogenyi Onazi (SS Lazio, Italy); Raheem Lawal (Adana Demirspor, Turkey) Forwards: Brown Ideye (Dynamo Kyiv, Ukraine); Victor Moses (Chelsea FC, England); Shola Ameobi (Newcastle United, England); Obafemi Martins (Levante FC, Spain)