All the invited Nigerian players have arrived at the Super Eagles camp in Austria ahead of friendly matches with African champions, Algeria, and the continent’s second-ranked team Tunisia on Friday and Tuesday.
Coach Gernot Rohr also invited the former German U-20 captain Kevin Akpoguma, who has been cleared by FIFA’s single judge to represent Nigeria.
His clearance solidifies a dependable backline of Kenneth Omeruo, Leon Balogun, Chidozie Awaziem, William Ekong, Olaoluwa Aina, Jamilu Collins, Oluwasemilogo Ajayi, and first-time invitee Zaidu Sanusi.
The coach has in his team, Captain Ahmed Musa, Alex Iwobi, Samuel Chukwueze and Kenneth Omeruo, but dropped the electrifying forward Victor Osimhen and midfield lynchpin Wilfred Ndidi.
New birds Frank Onyeka and Chidera Ejuke, and former U17 captain Samson Tijani have the opportunity to impress.
Algeria will come into Friday’s game not only as the champions of Africa but also on the back of an 18-match unbeaten run.
The former Algerian international, Djamel Belmadi who coached his country to a second continental title in Egypt last year, has included standout names Riyad Mahrez, Yassine Brahimi, Sofiane Feghouli and Baghdad Bounedjah in his 24-man squad to confront the three-time African champions.
Tunisia, who play the Super Eagles on Tuesday at the same venue, will host Sudan’s Falcons at the Stade Olympique in Rades on Friday at the same time the Eagles are taking to the pitch against the Fennecs in Austria.
Both matches will kick off at 8.30pm Austrian time (7.30pm Nigeria time).