Osimhen, Ighalo Miss Eagles’ First Training Session In Tangier

Osimhen, Ighalo Miss Eagles’ First Training Session In Tangier

SSC Napoli of Italy striker, Victor Osimhen and Odion Jude Ighalo from Al-Shabab of Saudi Arabia were both missing at the start of the Super Eagles’ training in Tangier, Morocco, towards this weekend’s qualifier against Liberia.

Megasportsarena.com reports that, while Osimhen was still expected to join the Nigerian camp before nightfall, speculation emerged that Ighalo might have snubbed the offer of a return to the Eagles, after announcing his retirement two years ago.

A recall for Ighalo to the Eagles appeared to have been orchestrated by the president of Nigeria Football Federation (NFF), Melvin Amaju Pinnick, but it was not clear if the striker had accepted the offer, hence several conjectures over his absence from the team’s first training session.

At lunchtime on Tuesday, only Osimhen, Ighalo and hastily drafted Enyimba of Aba goalkeeper, John Noble were being expected in the Eagles’ camp, few hours after the delegation of Liberia’s Lone Star also arrived in Tangier on Monday.

While expectations continued over Osimhen and Ighalo, a total of 21 players lined out for the Eagles’ first training session in Tangier on Tuesday, as the countdown got tighter towards the penultimate Qatar 2022 African qualifying encounter.

The Eagles had a gym session at the hotel in the morning and were scheduled to train in the evening at Grand Stade de Tanger (also known as Stade Ibn Batouta), which is a 45,000-capacity facility that was opened in April 2011.

The arena, though, is expected to be empty when Nigeria and Liberia tackle each other for three precious points on Saturday, as ‘the hosts’ did not make any move to get Confederation of African Football to approve crowd attendance at the game.

The Liberian squad, which has three goalkeepers, seven defenders, seven midfielders and five forwards, will try to steal an unlikely victory over Nigeria on Saturday, but they could take some inspiration from a recent victory Central African Republic pulled off against the Eagles in Lagos.
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