Iheanacho, Iwobi ready to lead new Super Eagles, says Yusuf
Super Eagles’ Caretaker Coach, Salisu Yusuf, has backed the likes of Arsenal youngster Alex Iwobi and his Manchester City counterpart, Kelechi Iheanacho, to play for the country for the next 10 years, reports africanfootball.com
He said he believes Nigeria now have a pool of exciting young talent, who if given the chance will flourish for many years at full international level.
Youngsters Iwobi, 20, and 19-year-old Iheanacho, as well as Wilfred Ndidi (19 years), Kingsley Madu (20 years), Musa Mohammed (19 years), William Troost-Ekong (22 years) and Moses Simon (20 years) were all involved in recent Eagles friendlies against Mali and Luxembourg with Yusuf in charge.
“Iheanacho and Iwobi have hardly started for the Eagles, but I started them in both games and they responded very well with Kelechi scoring in both games and providing assist as well,” he remarked.
“We won the two games we played by playing some good football and with a very young group.
“As much as 90 pre cent of those who featured in those games can play for Nigeria in the next 10 years. We have a base now that we can be developing, maybe two, three players joining up from time to time and you maintain this group to play for the country,” Yusuf said.
He added: “We gave the young players responsibility, we also gave them belief and confidence, and they took it. “Look at Iwobi – In the first game against Mali, he started and played for 75 minutes and in the second game, he was on for more than an hour, while previously he played 15, 20 minutes for the national team.“You don’t need experience of five years before you are given responsibility as long as you have the quality.”