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World Cup 2010 Focus: Nigeria Super Eagles Soar

Posted by Walker Tuesday, June 1, 2021

Guest writer/James Dielhenn
The golden generation of Nigerian players is said to have been and gone, and the current crop of players missed out on the 2006 World Cup altogether. This time around, they narrowly qualified, earning the win they needed in their very last qualification group match.

Swedish coach Lars Lagerback has taken his side to South Africa, and due to their low expectations they will enter the tournament fearless. Chelsea’s Jon-Obi Mikel is a vital midfielder for Lagerback, justifying his inclusion despite missing the last part of the domestic season through injury. Whether or not Mikel will recover in time to be able to fully participate for Nigeria is a matter yet to be decided. Everton’s Joseph Yobo is another high-profile name in Lagerback’s squad, alongside Fulham’s Dickson Etuhu, who has had a remarkable season with his club. Nigeria have plenty of options up-front, including ex-Inter veteran Nwankwo Kanu, whose experience will be key for his nation’s hopes. Yobo’s Everton team-mates Yakubu Ayigbeni and Victor Anichebe are also options in attack, as well as another former Inter youth player, Obafemi Martins. Chinedu Obasi of Hoffenheim and John Utaka of Portsmouth are other well-known options in the wide areas. How Lagerback intends to balance his large number of forward-thinking players could be key to Nigeria’s chances of enjoying a good World Cup.

Obasi confessed: “We are up against some tough teams like Argentina, with top players like Lionel Messi. It's important for us to prove that we can play our own game against the best.”

As well as Argentina, the Nigerians will come up against the more modest opposition of Greece and South Korea, meaning they have a decent chance of progressing to the next round if they can rise to the occasion.

Nigeria’s provisional FIFA World Cup squad:

Vincent Enyeama (Hapoel Tel Aviv), Dele Ayenugba (Beni Yehuda FC), Bassey Akpan (Bayelsa United), Austine Ejide (Hapoel Petah Tikva); Taye Taiwo (Marseille), Elderson Echiejile (Rennes), Chidi Odiah (CSKA Moscow) Onyekachi Apam (Nice), Joseph Yobo (Everton), Daniel Shittu (Bolton), Ayodele Adeleye (Sparta Rotterdam), Rabiu Afolabi (Salzburg), Peter Suswan (Lobi Stars); Kalu Uche (Almeria), Dickson Etuhu (Fulham), John Obi Mikel (Chelsea), Sani Kaita (Alaniya), Lukman Haruna (Monaco), Ayila Yussuf (Dynamo Kiev), Peter Osaze (Lokomotiv Moscow); Yakubu Ayegbeni (Everton), Victor Anichebe (Everton), Chinedu Obasi

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1 Responses to World Cup 2010 Focus: Nigeria Super Eagles Soar

  1. Anonymous Said:
  2. Let us keep the hope high


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