Interim Technical Adviser of Nigeria senior men’s national team, the Super Eagles, Augustine Eguavoen has cautioned the local press against distractions on which player features in the game against the Black Stars on during the first leg of the 2022 FIFA World Cup play-off against Ghana, saying the technical team does not want any form of distractions ahead of the crucial game.
Eguavoen has said that his team doesn’t need any distractions ahead of the game against the Black Stars as he has a firm idea of who plays and wouldn’t. He insists that he already knows his starting XI that will face the Black Stars on March 25, and as such suggests that media discussions on who should start ahead of who among the provisional 32-man squad he has called up should be put to rest.
Nigeria has been scheduled to play against Ghana in a two-legged play-off of the 2022 FIFA World Cup finals on March 25 and 29, with the overall aggregate winner securing one of Africa’s five tickets to represent the continent in the Qatar 2022 World Cup finals which starts in November this year.
“We have the eleven that will start,” Eguavoen told Elegbete TV, as quoted by dailypost.ng.
“We don’t need distractions, all we need is support to cross this hurdle,” he said.
The background to this reaction from the the former AFCON winner is due to conversations in the local media regarding whether 26-year old Watford midfielder Oghenekaro Peter Etebo would be in his starting line up against the Black Stars on March 25. Eguavoen then firmly stated that he is of a firm knowledge of who starts against Ghana already, and Peter does not have a guaranteed place to start.
“Etebo I have worked with closely, Bonke I have not and I have had no chance to go to France to watch him play.
“I have watched Etebo closely, I have watched him closely when he played in the U23s and when he played for the former coach Gernot Rohr in the Super Eagles.
“Etebo coming in now does not say he would be in the starting line-up.”, he insisted.