Football

Six Super Eagles’ Stars withdraw from Cameroon clash

Six of the nine defenders selected by Gernot Rohr have withdrawn from Super Eagles’ proposed friendly against Cameroon in Austria. 

EndSARS protest: Super Eagle Players wan shun AFCON qualifier sake of  Nigeria violence - BBC News Pidgin

The clash of African giants is scheduled to be held on June 4, but Nigeria may have to pull out of the tie if they cannot field a strong enough team. 

Kenneth Omeruo and Sadiq Umar are two of the defenders who have withdrawn from the tie because they will be involved with their clubs in the promotion playoffs in Spain. This is also the case with talented winger, Moses Simon, whose FC Nantes must win a relegation play-off if they hope to stay in the Ligue 1. 

EndSARS protest: Super Eagle Players wan shun AFCON qualifier sake of  Nigeria violence - BBC News Pidgin

While the official reason for the other withdrawals has been medical, player sources have alleged to ESPN that outstanding debts from the NFF have played a big part in their unwillingness to risk further injury.

“The players are not happy,” the source, who is one of the players who withdrew from the game, alleged to ESPN. “They have not paid bonuses and allowances, nothing at all for the entire [2021] Afcon qualifiers.

“We have sacrificed by playing throughout the qualifiers without being paid. I think now, with all the injuries, it is hard for many of us to make the sacrifice to come and play a meaningless friendly when the outstanding bonuses have not been paid.”

“It is better for us to stay away, recover properly, rest and get ready for the new season and the World Cup qualifiers.”

The Super Eagles coach now faces a tough challenge. He must find players to make up a squad of 18 less than a week before the match. Rohr, however, believes that medical withdrawals are legitimate. 

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