Super Eagles Technical Adviser, Gernot Rohr, on Monday listed John Mikel Obi, Victor Moses, Ahmed Musa and 27 others in his provisional 30-man squad for the World Cup 2018 finals scheduled to kick off in barely 30 days from today.
FC Crotone striker, Simeon Nwankwo, Nigeria Professional Football League (NPFL) leading scorer, Junior Lokosa, Champions, Plateau Unitedâ€™ safe hands, Dele Ajiboye, as well as Stephen Eze, were some of the surprise inclusion in the list released on the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) Twitter handle on Monday afternoon.
Nwankwo has been in superb goal-scoring form for his Italian Serie A club, scoring seven goals this term while Kano Pillarsâ€™ Lokosa leads the NPFL goal chart with 18 goals in the domestic topflight.
Rohrâ€™s list also includes Spain-based goalkeeper Francis Uzoho, defenders William Troost Ekong, Kenneth Omeruo and Olaoluwa Aina, midfielders Wilfred Ndidi, Joel Obi and John Ogu. Regular forwards like Kelechi Iheanacho, Moses Simon and Alex Iwobi also made the cut.
Chelsea wingback, Moses, was Nigeriaâ€™s top scorer in the qualifying campaign with three goals, while Captain Mikel Obi, Iwobi, Simon and Iheanacho weighed in with two goals each.
NFFâ€™s Spokesman, Ademola Olajire, confirmed yesterday that all invited players have been told to report at the Le Meridien Hotel and Golf Resort in Uyo on Monday, May 21.
Uyo, as home ground, was the conquering terrain for the Super Eagles during the qualifying series.
LIST OF INVITED EAGLES
GOALKEEPERS: Ikechukwu Ezenwa (Enyimba FC); Francis Uzoho (Deportivo La Coruna, Spain); Daniel Akpeyi (Chippa United, South Africa); Dele Ajiboye (Plateau United)
DEFENDERS: Abdullahi Shehu (Bursaspor FC, Turkey); Tyronne Ebuehi (Ado Den Haag, The Netherlands); Olaoluwa Aina (Hull City, England); Elderson Echiejile (Cercle Brugge KSV, Belgium); Brian Idowu (Amkar Perm, Russia); Chidozie Awaziem (Nantes FC, France); William Ekong (Bursaspor FC, Turkey); Leon Balogun (FSV Mainz 05, Germany); Kenneth Omeruo (Kasimpasa FC, Turkey); Stephen Eze (Lokomotiv Plovdiv, Bulgaria)
MIDFIELDERS: John Mikel Obi (Tianjin Teda, China); Ogenyi Onazi (Trabzonspor FC, Turkey); Wilfred Ndidi (Leicester City, England); Oghenekaro Etebo (UD Las Palmas, Spain); John Ogu (Hapoel Beâ€™er Sheva, Israel); Uche Agbo (Standard Liege, Belgium); Joel Obi (Torino FC, Italy); Mikel Agu (Bursaspor FC, Turkey)
FORWARDS: Ahmed Musa (CSKA Moscow, Russia); Kelechi Iheanacho (Leicester City, England); Moses Simon (KAA Gent, Belgium); Victor Moses (Chelsea FC, England); Odion Ighalo (Changchun Yatai, China); Alex Iwobi (Arsenal FC, England); Nwankwo Simeon (Crotone FC, Italy); Junior Lokosa (Kano Pillars)