Siasia picks Etebo, Ezenwa, drops Chikatara for Egypt clash
Henry hails Iwobi’s mentality
Rwanda 2016 CHAN sensation, Chisom Chikatara and Abia Warriors’ Captain, Austin Oboroakpo, are some of the notable omission from the final home-based squad billed to join their foreign-based counterparts in the final preparations for the Gabon 2016 African Nations Cup two-legged qualifiers against Egypt.
Coach Samson Siasia at the weekend picked six home-based players for the qualifiers, including goalkeeper Ikechukwu Ezenwa, Kalu Orji and Chibuzor Okonkwo.
Others are Matthew Etim, Ifeanyi Matthew and U-23 Africa Cup of Nations highest goal scorer Oghenekaro Etebo.
They will join up with the overseas-based players for the clash against Egypt.
Nigeria will facer Egypt on Friday at the Ahmadu Bello Stadium in Kaduna and travel for the return leg in Alexandria four days later.
Also among the home-based players dropped from the team are Enyimba pair of Femi Thomas and Chima Akas, who left the training camp to rejoin the Aba side ahead of their CAF Champions League tie in Burundi.
The foreign-based stars in the team are expected to be in Kaduna latest tomorrow.
Meanwhile, Arsenal legend, Thierry Henry, believes Alex Iwobi’s recent rise to prominence is down to his mentality and will be a source of pride for the club’s academy staff.
The 19-year-old winger, who made his Arsenal debut in October, produced a lively performance in the 3-1 Champions League defeat at the hands of Barcelona in midweek, before scoring his first goal at senior level in Saturday’s 2-0 win over Everton.
Henry was thoroughly impressed with Iwobi’s performances and has hailed the versatile attacker’s professionalism.
“Watching Iwobi against Barcelona on Wednesday will have been a source of immense pride and joy for academy head, Andries Jonkers, and all the coaching staff who have worked with him over the years,” Henry wrote in his weekly column for The Sun.
“Alex wasn’t scared against the best team in the world in the Nou Camp. He was brave on the ball, calm in and around the penalty area and justified all the work invested in him by the academy.
“He is the perfect example of how a kid has to behave to make it to the top. He works hard, he listens and he is always on time.
“He has blossomed since breaking into the seniors and his goal and brilliant display against Everton on Saturday underlined his potential.”