Enyeama (in red) during a match for the Super Eagles
Nigeria caretaker coach Samson Siasia has said he has left his door open for Lille goalkeeper Vincent Enyeama because he still needs him in his team. Enyeama quit international football last year after a much publicised row with former Eagles coach Sunday Oliseh.
Siasia has tried to persuade him to return for this month’s AFCON qualifiers against Egypt, but the goalkeeper has turned down the chance. However, the Nigeria interim coach said he will still welcome him back when he is ready to return.
“Whenever he is ready, he will be back in the team,” Siasia said. “We need players like him in the team, but we can’t force him to return.”
Enyeama has been one of the longest serving players in the Eagles team having made his international debut in 2001. He has featured in three World Cups.
Siasia has also extended an invitation to Germany-based defender Leon Balogun for the matches against Egypt. According to the NFF official site, Mainz 05 defender Balogun will join a 42-man squad list announced by Siasia.
There has been a clamour for Balogun’s invitation on the back of his performances in the Bundesliga this season.
He has made 18 appearances for Mainz in all competitions, the last being the 2-1 defeat of Bayern Munich on Wednesday. His partnership with Stefan Bell in Mainz central defense has been largely the reason the team is in the hunt for a Champions League play-off spot.
Meanwhile the Eagles coach will be relieved that West Ham forward Victor Moses is expected to fully recover from a knock for his club’s visit to Manchester United on March 13. The often injured Victor Moses has been recalled by Nigeria for the crucial showdown against Egypt after more than a year from international football.
The forward, who is on loan from Chelsea, last featured for West Ham in a 1-0 home win over Sunderland on Feb 27 before he suffered a knock. Former Eagles coach Sunday Oliseh has expressed fears over the player’s fitness and had planned to visit him in London to ascertain his true situation before he resigned his post last month. Moses, 25, has scored a goal in 16 appearances for ‘The Hammers’ in the EPL this season.