Gernot Rohr has charged the 25 players from the Nigeria Professional Football League (NPFL) invited to the national team camp for next month’s friendly with Mexico to make the most of their chance.
Nigeria play defending Gold Cup champions Mexico in an international friendly on 4 July at the Los Angeles Coliseum.
With most of the Super Eagles foreign regulars set to begin pre-season training with their respective clubs at the time of the friendly, the NFF opted for a squad of home-based players most of whom are earning first call ups for the friendly.
NFF technical director Austin Eguavoen and not Rohr will take charge of the team, with most of the players likely to form the core of the next CHAN Eagles squad.
Nonetheless, former Bordeaux coach Rohr was in Abuja to watch the players opening training session and was impressed with the players’ display and fitness levels.
Addressing the team after their training session, Rohr encouraged the players to make the most of the privilege afforded them to play for the three-time African champions.
The former Gabon coach was, however, quick to warn them against using their newfound elevated status for any individual pursuit of glory to the detriment of the collective. Rohr hinted he’d be looking for players who place the team first for possible future call ups.
“I’m happy to see a good training session. Some of you were already with me, I think two other boys will join you tonight. I see that you’re already fit physically, so a very good training session,” Rohr said.
“We have the privilege to go to the States, the US, which is a very wonderful journey, and a wonderful game to play against Mexico. So I’m here to see you, to help you, to speak with your staff.
“You’re together with the coach already all the time, and the technical director Austin is working with me all the time like [NFF assistant technical director Paul Aigbogun]. I assisted Paul a little bit for the World Cup for the Under 20, so we’re a family altogether.
“What we want to see is collective football, not to do one-man show, and watching for those players who are playing for the team.”
List Of Invited Players For Mexico Friendly
Goalkeepers: Ikechukwu Ezenwa (Heartland FC); John Noble (Enyimba FC)
Defenders: Olisa Ndah (Akwa United); Adekunle Adeleke (Abia Warriors);Tope Olusesi (Rangers International); Ifeanyi Anaemena (RiversUnited); Christopher Nwaeze (Kwara United); Enyinnaya Kazie (RiversUnited); Mohammed Zirkiflu (Plateau United); Imoh Ubot (Enyimba FC);Tebo Franklin Degaulle (Nasarawa United); Lawal Oriyomi Murtala (KwaraUnited)
Midfielders: Anthony Shimaga (Rangers International); Seth Mayi (AkwaUnited); Uche Nwasonaya (Plateau United); Samuel Nnoshiri (KatsinaUnited); Ekundayo Ojo (Enyimba FC)
Forwards: Anayo Iwuala (Enyimba FC); Stephen Jude (Kwara United);Ibrahim Olawoyin (Rangers International); Charles Ashimene (AkwaUnited); Chinonso Eziekwe (Rangers International); Auwalu Ali Malam(Kano Pillars); Neurot Emmanuel (Plateau United); Abdulmutalif Sanusi (Katsina United)