Mikel Confirmed for Rio Olympics


Chelsea midfielder John Mikel Obi will feature at the Rio Olympics after initial fears he will not, according to Nigeria Olympic team coach Samson Siasia.

Siasia himself had raised fears over the availability of the Chelsea midfielder as one of the over-aged players for the Olympics in August.

But he has now confirmed Mikel will feature in Rio in August.
“Mikel has confirmed his availability,” Siasia disclosed.

“We have some other players who have promised to join us and they have shown commitment like Wilfred Ndidi, who has assured us that he will join us in America.

“Other players who will be available are goalkeeper Daniel Akpeyi and Kenneth Omeruo. These are the players who are confirmed for now.”
This should be some cheering news for Siasia, who will be without several players not released by their foreign clubs.

Siasia is however disappointed that after Alex Iwobi and his father failed to keep the promises they made to him over the Arsenal forward’s participation at the Rio Olympics.

“Alex Iwobi is not coming. I tried to call his father, but he wasn’t picking my calls. He used to call me frequently when he wanted his son to play for the country, but now that we need his son for the Olympics football tournament, he is not picking my calls,” lamented Siasia.

“But there is no problem, Alex remains my boy, I love him like my own son, but I am just disappointed that he and his father couldn’t keep the promises they made to me.”

Incidentally, the 20-year-old Iwobi first trained with Siasia’s Under-23s before he changed his international allegiance from England to make his debut for the Super Eagles last year.

Arsenal’s Alex Iwobi, Watford striker Odion Ighalo and Kelechi Iheanacho of Manchester City opted out of the tournament after their clubs blocked them as the Rio2016 football tournament is not on the FIFA calendar.