Osimhen to Miss Nigeria, Sierra Leone Clash in Freetown


• Sierra Leone Coach praises his boys for draw with Nigeria

Duro Ikhazuagbe

Super Eagles top striker, Victor Osimhen has been ruled out of Nigeria’s reverse fixture with Sierra Leone in Freetown on Tuesday evening.

The Napoli frontman dislocated his shoulder in last Friday’s 2022 Africa Cup of Nations clash between Nigeria and the Leone Stars at the Samuel Ogbemudia Stadium in Benin City.

Osimhen scored Nigeria’s second goal and provided assist to Alex Iwobi before he was however forced out of the game after he dislocated his shoulder. Eagles were four goals up before they were pecked back 4-4 to the total consternation of football fans in the ancient city.

Although he has since been discharged from hospital, Super Eagles Head Coach Gernot but Rohr revealed yesterday that Osimhen will not be available for Tuesday rematch in Sierra Leone.

“He is out of the match after he dislocated his shoulder,” Rohr disclosed.

Osimhen, 21, has scored four goals in three AFCON qualifiers.

Speaking on Super Eagles YouTube channel yesterday afternoon, Rohr however remains optimistic that both Samuel Chukwueze and Leon Balogun who were similarly injured will be fit for the Match-day four tie in Freetown.

“Balogun was replaced after he got injured, he did not train today (Saturday) but he will be okay, while Chukwueze has a little pain around the groin, but we hope to have him back,” Rohr assured Nigerian football fans who blamed him for allowing Eagles to squander the four goals advantage with his game plan and poor substitutions

The third injured Nigerian player, Emmanuel Dennis of Club Brugge in the Belgian Jupiler league may also make the trip to Freetown.

Meanwhile, Sierra Leone Coach, John Keister has praised his players for their famous 4-4 comeback i. Benin City last Friday.

In particular, he praised his super substitutes that changed the completion of the match. Unlike in the Super Eagles where irrational substitution ruined the game, all four Keister’s changes provided the inspiration for the famous comeback.

“We’re delighted. Playing away in Nigeria as always was going to be difficult,” Keister told journalists during his post-match conference in Benin. “I think we showed Nigeria a lot of respect in the first half, but we realised we needed to bring in fresh legs and important players we left out.”

“The difference was the changes that we made. I’m not disappointed we didn’t win the match. We can’t be too greedy. We’ll take the draw to Freetown. I think it was a game of two halves.”