By Victor Kanayo
Napoli hitman Victor Osimhen and Bundesliga goalscoring machine Victor Boniface have been called up ahead of international friendly match between Nigeria and Saudi Arabia, then Mozambique.
This was disclosed in a statement made available to Heritage Times HT by the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) on Monday, October 2, 2023.
According to the statement, Nigeria’s Coach Jose Santos Peseiro has recalled defenders Kenneth Omeruo and Bright Osayi-Samuel, as well as midfielder Alex Iwobi and forward Terem Moffi to the Super Eagles’ squad for the two games slated for Portugal.
The quartet were absent from the team that demolished Sao Tome and Principe in last month’s 2023 AFCON qualifier in Uyo.
“Midfielder Fisayo Dele-Bashiru, of Hatayaspor FC of Turkey gets his first-ever invitation, while Peseiro has decided to retain the trio of Francis Uzoho, Adebayo Adeleye and Olorunleke Ojo in goal. Yet-to-be-capped defender Jordan Torunnarigha is also called.
“Wilfred Ndidi, who captained the team against Sao Tome and Principe, as well as Raphael Onyedika and forwards Moses Simon, Ademola Lookman, Victor Osimhen, Taiwo Awoniyi and Kelechi Iheanacho have also been invited,” the statement from the NFF Communications department said.
The Super Eagles take on the Green Falcons of Saudi Arabia in the city of Portimão, Portugal, on Friday October 13, 2023, starting at 5pm before a clash with the Mambas of Mozambique in the same city three days later.
“The players are all expected to arrive in Faro, Portugal on Tuesday, 10th October.
“Both encounters have been arranged as tune-up games for the Eagles ahead of the commencement of the 2026 FIFA World Cup qualifying matches, in which the three-time African champions host Lesotho’s Crocodiles in Uyo on 17th November before travelling away to play Zimbabwe four days later,” the statement added.
Already, Nigeria has qualified for the 2023 Africa Cup of Nations scheduled between January and February, 2023.
Full List of Invited Players
The invited goalkeepers are Francis Uzoho (Omonia FC, Cyprus); Olorunleke Ojo (Enyimba FC); Adebayo Adeleye (Hapoel Jerusalem, Israel).
Olaoluwa Aina (Nottingham Forest, England); Bright Osayi-Samuel (Fenerbahce FC, Turkey); Jordan Torunarigha (KAA Gent, Belgium); Kenneth Omeruo (Kasimpasa FC, Turkey); Oluwasemilogo Ajayi (West Bromwich Albion, England); Calvin Bassey (Fulham FC, England); Jamilu Collins (Cardiff FC, Wales); Bruno Onyemaechi (Boavista FC, Portugal) are the invited defenders
While the called up midfielders are Wilfred Ndidi (Leicester City, England); Raphael Onyedika (Club Brugge, Belgium); Joe Ayodele-Aribo (Southampton FC, England); Frank Onyeka (Brentford FC, England); Alex Iwobi (Fulham FC, England); Fisayo Dele-Bashiru (Hatayaspor FC, Turkey)
Forwards are Kelechi Iheanacho (Leicester City, England); Samuel Chukwueze (AC Milan, Italy); Moses Simon (FC Nantes, France); Ademola Lookman (Atalanta FC, Italy); Victor Osimhen (SSC Napoli, Italy); Taiwo Awoniyi (Nottingham Forest, England); Terem Moffi (OGC Nice, France); Victor Boniface (Bayer Leverkusen, Germany).