6 January 2013

Nigeria: Afcon - Keshi Growing Grey Hairs

Photo: Vanguard
Eagle’s coach, Keshi

Nigeria coach Stephen Keshi is "growing grey hairs" over picking his final 23-man squad for the AFCON, officials said.

Nigeria team spokesman Ben Alaiya disclosed that the performance of the players in a training camp in Faro, Portugal, has made Keshi's job of selecting the best players for the Nations Cup difficult. "The competition here is very tough.

"Keshi is growing grey hairs over who to drop because all the players are on top of their game as they all want to be at the Nations Cup," Alaiya said.

"In fact, Keshi at the training on Thursday did not know when he voiced out that he is in trouble as he doesn't know who to drop."

Eagles goalkeeper trainer Ike Shorunmu is also satisfied with the showing of the goalkeepers from the Nigeria Premier League, Daniel Akpeyi and Chigozie Agbim.

"Ike Shorunmu is happy with the form of Akpeyi and Agbim, who we all saw what he could do against Catalonia. Ike said any of these goalkeepers could be in goal and he won't panic if Enyeama and Ejide decided to stay away," Alaiya said.

For one, Valenrenga of Norway midfielder Fegor Ogude admitted to MTNFootball.com that the fight for places in the Eagles midfield will be fierce.

Fegor made a return to the Eagles line up in the game against Catalonia after he was sidelined for the better part of last year by injury.

With the emergence of Ogenyi Onazi, Rabiu Ibrahim, Nosa Igiebor, Gabriel Reuben, Henry Uche, Raheem Lawal, Obiora Nwankwo and Mikel Obi, Fegor told MTNFootball.com: "The battle for a shirt in the midfield would be tensed. We have great players who are skillful and can handle the ball very well.

"But I am not afraid because this is my job, it's what I do every day and as such I am battle ready for the challenge." Keshi has said he will make public his final squad on Tuesday, a day before the CAF deadline.

The Eagles will take on giant killers Cape Verde in another AFCON warm-up game on Wednesday in Faro. The Eagles are due to fly out to South Africa on January 16.

The Super Eagles is are drawn in Group C along side the defending champions, Zambia, Burkina Faso and Ethiopia. The Nigerian National team begin their campaign on January 21 against Burkina Faso.

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