Thursday Nov 03, 2016. 12:33
Nigeria officials are disputing claims by English club Wolverhampton Wanderers that a hip injury has ruled out No.1 goalkeeper Carl Ikeme from a must-win World Cup qualifier against Algeria and they are now insisting on a second opinion.
Nigeria welcome Algeria to Uyo on November 12 and they are leaving nothing to chance to ensure they win the game and consolidate their leadership of their qualifying section for the 2018 World Cup in Russia.
This week, Wolves contacted the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) to say Ikeme will not be available for the World Cup qualifier on account of injury.
Officials are still miffed that the Premier League clubs of Victor Moses (Chelsea) and Isaac Success (Watford) deliberately blocked the players from last month’s clash in Zambia using injury as an excuse.
“The officials wish to ascertain the severity the injury Ikeme suffered at a league game over the weekend,” disclosed a top source.
“They still believe that Victor Moses and Isaac Success were stopped from the last World Cup qualifier by their English clubs.”
Ikeme’s absence is a major blow for Nigeria as he has established himself as the country’s No.1 goalkeeper since his brilliant debut in a 2017 AFCON qualifier in Tanzania in September 2015.
He was the man of the match after he made several big saves for Nigeria to beat hosts Zambia 2-1 in Ndola last month in an opening World Cup qualifier.