AFCON Qualifiers: Fans query Peseiro’s invitation of inactive players

With barely 48 hours to the 2023 Africa Cup of Nations qualifier between Nigeria and Guinea-Bissau, fans of the three-time African champions have queried the inclusion of some players in the squad for the doubleheader, PUNCH Sports Extra reports.

Super Eagles coach, Jose Peseiro, caused a stir with his squad list for the game after he included Kingsley Aniagboso a goalkeeper with second-division club Giant Brillars and Daniel Bameyi of YumYum FC.

Bameyi, 17, captained the Flying Eagles at the recent U-20 AFCON in Egypt Bameyi, 17, is registered as a defender by non-league side YumYum FC.

Aside inclusion of the duo in the team, Peseiro also invited six players who have largely played for their respective European clubs this year.

The players are captain Ahmed Musa, Kenneth Omeruo, Frank Onyeka, Paul Onuachu, Semi Ajayi and Joe Aribo.

Musa has seen only 10 minutes in his last seven games for Sivasspor in the Turkish Super Lig, while defenders Omeruo and Ajayi have 244 and 121 minutes of action for their teams Leganes and West Brom, both in the lower league in Spain and England respectively.

Midfielder Onyeka, who recently returned from a hamstring injury that kept him out of action for 10 weeks, has seen only 61 minutes for Brentford in 2023.

Striker Onuachu, who joined bottom-place Premier League side Southampton from Genk on transfer deadline in January, has failed to sparkle for the relegation battlers in the Premier League. The lanky striker has not scored a goal or made an assist for the Saints since joining them.

Aribo started his career at Saint Marys brightly, scoring twice in his first eight games, but his form dipped and was subsequently banished to the U-23s.

Reacting to the invitation of largely inactive players to the Eagles squad for the AFCON qualifiers against Guinea-Bissau, Ola Japola, a Twitter user, said, “Iwobi, Onyeka, Aribo and Ndidi?  How long will the Super Eagles continue with this rubbish call-up,” @Japola wrote.

“This midfield couldn’t get us past the round of 16 at the last AFCON, couldn’t qualify us for World Cup. This is 2023, nothing has changed. With only Iwobi a regular starter in a struggling team, we won’t get anywhere.

“Nigeria is not a serious country. No merit. How do you call up Simon Moses, Ahmed Musa and ignore Gift Orban of Gent who scored seven goals in two games.”

Adamson Agada also posted on Twitter, adding that it was time to drop Musa, Nigeria’s most capped footballer with 107 games, from the team.

“No grudge against Musa, but it’s time we look beyond having him on the list. There are better attackers out there who would add value to the team. The coaching crew and the federation could list four midfielders. Only Alex (Iwobi), others lack game time with their respective clubs. Sincerely @RiversUnitedFC  will beat this Eagles’ squad.”

@teefresh_mic posted, “Omeruo, Musa, Onyeka, Aribo, Onuachu, Semi Ajayi shouldn’t be in this team. Omeruo and Musa are blocking others coming through in my opinion. Our coach possesses some traits of Gernot Rohr’s traits.”

Minion Shakes added that the Eagles’ midfield lacked depth.

“Musa will still be called up for national duty even if he’s NFF President. No depth in midfield. Injury to Ndidi or Iwobi and we’re done for. Gift Orban should have been given a chance in the Eagles, not the U-23 team.”

@Don17488409 posted, “The NFF and the coaches are never ready to change, Ahmed Musa in the Eagles squad? We have Gift Orban, Chuba Akpom blazing hot, four midfielders, including Onyeka who just returned from injury, Aribo relegated to Southampton U-23, Iwobi is the only active player in the team, all while Peseiro has failed to scout new midfielders for the team. We are heading for disaster.”

Michael Daniel questioned Moses Simon’s inclusion in the squad for the game against Guinea-Bissau.

“Why is Ahmed Musa and Simon in the squad? Can’t we look for new players? Michael Olise, Eze should be looked at and Chuba Akpom is there in the English Championship doing very well scoring 25 goals already.”

@kenokeyatuegwu added, “This Musa obsession is getting irritating!! Let’s face it dude is past his prime with the Super Eagles. Must we politicise everything in this country? His space should be given to deserving younger players.

@emmatheargos said Peseiro should have considered midfielders in the Nigerian Professional Football League, following the inactiveness of the Europe-based players.

“I’m sure we can get quality midfielders from the NPFL and the smaller foreign leagues than the quartet we have in this team.”

The fans also called for the inclusion of Chuba Akpom in the squad in subsequent games.

 @dezfootie said, “Some new exciting players like Chuba Akpom shouldn’t be missing though. He’s done enough to make this squad.

@dami_fine added, “Thank you for influencing this Super Eagles squad list, I don’t understand why Ahmed Musa who has played 20 matches this season without a goal and Moses Simon 23 matches with five goals and three assists and they are consistent?”

“Paul Onuachu at Southampton has failed to score in six appearances while Gift Orban of Gent in Belgium has scored seven times.”

@tife4life added, “I don’t know what Musa is still finding in the squad, this man hasn’t scored a goal this year and we have Folarin Balogun there at France ruining Lionel Messi and Kylian Mbappe’s top scorer nightmare… A special talent set to be lost again for the Eagles.”

Eagles coach Peseiro also wasn’t spared by the fans as they believe he is part of the rot stalling the growth of the Eagles.

Kola Olugboye tweeted via his handle @kolaolugboye, “The combination of this @thenff and @JosePeseiro will not take the Super Eagles anywhere I’m sorry. Bameyi should give me his plug in the NFF maybe I will get a ballboy gig! Musa? Aribo? No Adeleye? Why are we like this but what do I know? #AFCONQ2023

Adeniyi Samuel added, “Are the eagles going to fly again under this coach with such antecedents? Water will always find its level! I am not expecting anything under the watch of this college coach.

Back to top button