Nigeria/South Africa: Kalu Missing As Super Eagles Intensify Preparation for Clash With South Africa

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Soccer ball in a stadium.
14 November 2018

France-based Stephen Kalu was the only player missing yesterday when the Super Eagles had their first full training session at the Stephen Keshi Stadium, Asaba ahead their Cameroon 2019 Africa Nations Cup (AFCON) qualifier against the Bafana Bafana of South Africa. Officials of the team said the Bordeaux-based Kalu would join his mates today.

Nigeria will on Saturday meet South Africa in Johannesburg in a match it needs only a point to qualify for the AFCON.

The team, led by Ahmed Musa in the absence of the injured Mikel Obi, trained at the stadium, which will host the Super Eagles' international friendly against Uganda on Tuesday.

Among the players at the evening session were goalkeepers Daniel Akpeyi, Theophilus Afelokhai and Ikechukwu Ezenwa, and defenders Olaoluwa Aina, Adeleye Aniyikaye, Semi Ajayi, Bryan Idowu, William Ekong, Leon Balogun, Kenneth Omeruo and Jamilu Collins.

The midfielders included Oghenekaro Etebo, John Ogu and Mikel Agu, while the forwards were Kelechi Iheanacho, Moses Simon, Victor Osimhen, Henry Onyekuru, Alex Iwobi, Isaac Success and Samuel Chukwueze.

Although the Super Eagles need just a point from the game, the players say they would go all out for victory to avenge the 0-2 loss they suffered in the hands of the South Africans in Uyo last year.

According to, the Nigerian delegation will depart the country aboard a chartered flight from the Benin City Airport on Thursday evening. The Eagles are expected to have a feel of the picturesque FNB Stadium on Friday afternoon by 3.30 p.m.

Meanwhile, Super Eagles Manager, Gernot Rohr has condemned the Stephen Keshi Stadium, Asaba, as not yet good enough to host Nigeria's international friendly match against Uganda. But he added that the arena could still be good for the game if certain adjustments were made to the facilities.

He praised the groundsmen for the work they have done so far on the pitch and other facilities and prayed it would be completed before the game on Tuesday.

"They are working hard on making the stadium ready for the friendly match. With what I have seen so far, they have done a good job already.

"They still need to put final touches on the main pitch to make it ready. I believe it will be okay," he said.

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