Emma Okocha, elder brother to Super Eagles legend, Austin Jay-Jay Okocha has sent a message to Gernot Rohr, saying that Chelsea legend John Obi Mikel remains relevant to the national team due to the quality he brings to the team.
In truth, the national team has toiled to produce satisfactory chemistry in the middle of the park in the absence of the mercurial midfielder and the former Super Eagles star yearned to see him return quickly in the team before the tournament proper.
He went ahead to compare him with current Ballon d'Or holder, Luka Modric whom he faced at the 2018 World Cup in Russia and lauded his efforts to match up with the Real Madrid star and the Argentine midfielders.
"Look at how he performed against one of the best midfielders the game has seen at the last World Cup, he stood his ground against Luka Modric and co. and it was just unfortunate he didn't get enough quality support from his fellow midfield players for us to come away with a better result against Croatia. Against Argentina, he did very well too," Okocha recalled.
"At present, we do not have many creative players in the team's midfield and that is sad. Take a look at our midfield in that game without him. Versus Seychelles, most of them were just there."
On Levante winger, Moses Simon who made his first competitive appearance since missing out on the World Cup on account of an injury, he said, "The guy they brought late on Simon was really impressive. He looked determined unlike his peers."