World Cup qualifiers: Nigeria announce squad for South Africa, Benin

World Cup qualifiers: Nigeria announce squad for South Africa, Benin

  • The Nigeria Football Federation has unveiled the 23-man squad for the upcoming World Cup qualifiers against South Africa and Benin Republic.

Head coach Finidi George's selection includes three goalkeepers, six defenders, six midfielders, and eight forwards.

Napoli striker Victor Osimhen, Bayer Leverkusen star Nathan Tella, and AC Milan's Samuel Chukwueze are among those named. Ademola Lookman, fresh from leading Atalanta BC to a Europa League victory, also features in the lineup.

The squad highlights include standout players from the 2023 Africa Cup of Nations such as Frank Onyeka and goalkeeper Stanley Nwabali.

Notably absent are captain Ahmed Musa and vice-captain William Troost-Ekong.

Returning to the squad is Maduka Okoye, after impressive performances for Udinese FC, and Victor Boniface, named German Bundesliga Rookie of the Year, who is back from injury.

Other key players include defenders Calvin Bassey and Semi Ajayi, midfielders Wilfred Ndidi, Alex Iwobi, and Alhassan Yusuf, as well as forwards Kelechi Iheanacho, Victor Boniface, and Terem Moffi.

Remo Stars’ defender Sadiq Ismael and Trabzonspor’s Paul Onuachu have also been called up.

Nigeria will play South Africa at the Godswill Akpabio Stadium in Uyo on Friday, June 7, with kickoff at 8 PM. They will then travel to Abidjan to face Benin Republic at the Stade Felix Houphouet-Boigny on Monday, June 10.

Full Squad List:

Goalkeepers: Stanley Nwabali (Chippa United, South Africa); Maduka Okoye (Udinese FC, Italy); Ojo Olorunleke (Enyimba FC)

Defenders: Chidozie Awaziem (Boavista FC, Portugal); Bright Osayi-Samuel (Fenerbahce FC, Turkey); Sadiq Ismael (Remo Stars FC); Oluwasemilogo Ajayi (West Bromwich Albion, England); Calvin Bassey (Fulham FC, England); Benjamin Tanimu (Ihefu SC, Tanzania)

Midfielders: Wilfred Ndidi (Leicester City, England); Raphael Onyedika (Club Brugge, Belgium); Alhassan Yusuf Abdullahi (Royal Antwerp FC, Belgium); Frank Onyeka (Brentford FC, England); Alex Iwobi (Fulham FC, England); Fisayo Dele-Bashiru (Hatayspor, Turkey)

Forwards: Nathan Tella (Bayer Leverkusen, Germany); Victor Osimhen (SSC Napoli, Italy); Kelechi Iheanacho (Leicester City, England); Samuel Chukwueze (AC Milan, Italy); Paul Onuachu (Trabzonspor FC, Turkey); Ademola Lookman (Atalanta FC, Italy); Victor Boniface (Bayer Leverkusen, Germany); Terem Moffi (OGC Nice, France)

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