Super Eagles players will regroup in Uyo, Akwa Ibom State on Sunday to begin camping for their 2026 FIFA World Cup qualifier against the Crocodiles of Lesotho on November 16.
The Group C encounter will hold at the Godswill Akpabio International Stadium, Uyo.
According to Nigeria Football Federation’s (NFF) Media Director, Ademola Olajire, all logistics for the successful organisation of the game are already in place, while the list of players for the match will come out on Friday.
The Super Eagles were to battle Lesotho initially on Friday, November 17, but the date was shifted by FIFA to Thursday, November 16.
Apart from Lesotho, the Super Eagles will also play against Zimbabwe, South Africa, Rwanda and Benin Republic in Group C of Africa’s 2026 FIFA World Cup qualifying series.
The Super Eagles failed to qualify for the 2022 World Cup in Qatar after losing on the away goals rule to the Black Stars of Ghana. They drew goalless in Accra and played out a 1-1 draw at the MKO Abiola National Stadium, Abuja, to crash out of the race to Qatar.
This term, the Eagles have promised to ensure Nigeria does not miss another World Cup competition.
After the match against Lesotho, the Eagles will fly to Southern Africa to meet the Warriors of Zimbabwe at the Amahoro Stadium in Kigali, later this month.
Nigeria Won’t Win AFCON 2023 — Ex-Eagles Defender
Ex-international, George Abbey, has ruled out the possibility of the Super Eagles winning the forthcoming Africa Cup of Nations tournament with the current crop of players in the squad, The PUNCH reports.
The Eagles are aiming to clinch their fourth title AFCON title at the 34th edition scheduled for in Ivory Coast early next year after winning it in 1980 on home soil, the 1994 edition in Tunisia as well as the 2013 finals in South Africa.
In their bid to achieve their said target, the three-time AFCON winners have since adopted the battlecry ‘Let’s Do It Again’ in their quest for another AFCON title Ivory Coast.
But despite their mantra, Abbey who made 18 appearances for the Eagles and was a member of the Eagles squad that won bronze at the 2004 edition in Tunisia said Jose Peseiro’s team has flattered to deceive with their performance in their recent games despite ending their 15-game winless run in friendly games.
The former Crewe Alexandra defender believes that the current Eagles squad is not strong enough to compete for the title in Ivory Coast even with Vincent Enyeama in goal.
The Eagles’ goalkeeping worries resurfaced again when Francis Uzoho who returned to the squad after missing the last game due to suspension committed howlers in the Eagles friendlies against Saudi Arabia and Mozambique – a display which has left fans with concerns as the AFCON tournament approaches.
“We are patriotic as a country, we forget to check the present weather forecast,” Abbey stated.
“This current team is not as strong as our 2013 squad and in my opinion that team overachieved based on the team they were up against.
“Even if we magically produce a prime Vincent Enyeama and put him behind this team, I still wouldn’t back us to win the AFCON. I hope they prove me wrong but I doubt they will.”
The three-time African champions are drawn against hosts Ivory Coast, Equatorial Guinea and Guinea-Bissau in the first round of the delayed 2023 AFCON in January 2024.
Ndidi Nominated For Championship Player Of The Month Award
Super Eagles midfielder, Wilfred Ndidi has been nominated for the PFA Championship Fans’ player of the month award for September.
The versatile midfielder has found himself rejuvenated in a new role under the tutelage of the new boss, Enzo Maresca, and even scored in Leicester’s 4-1 win over Southampton, securing the man of the match award.
The 26-year-old featured in all of The Foxes’four game last month, helping his side to three wins in those four games. His in-form teammate, Kiernan Dewsbury-Hall was also The Englishman has scored the most goals at the King Power Stadium this season, adding a brace to his tally in their last game, as Kelechi Iheanacho also found the back of the net after he was teed up by Ndidi.
The nominees for September’s PFA Championship Fans’ Player of the Month include Leicester City’s Wilfred Ndidi and Dewsbury-Hall. No one had more key passes than Dewsbury-Hall in September.
Elsewhere, Argyle’s Morgan Whittaker contributed to five league goals, including a hat-trick against Norwich City, while Nathan Broadhead scored vital goals for high-flying Ipswich Town.
Sunderland’s Jack Clarke was the top scorer with six goals in September, and Preston’s Liam Lindsay, has been a rock at the back, with his side closing September in third place.
Maresca’s men have won nine out of ten league games and currently occupy the number one spot in the sky Bet Championships.
Super Falcons Forward, Oparanozie, Retires At 29
Nigeria’s Super Falcons forward Desire Ugochi Oparanozie has announced her retirement from football for both country and club at the age of 29.
Oparanozie was included in the squad that represented Nigeria at the 2023 FIFA Women’s World Cup which started in July and ended in August.
In a post on Wednesday, on her X account, formerly Twitter, she wrote, “To my fans, family, and friends, thank you for the show of love and support over the years. It’s time to take a bow, as I believe there’s no better time than now. I’m officially announcing my retirement from professional football for both club and country.
“To every team and coach I have played for, to every mate I’ve played alongside, and to every opponent I have played against, thank you all for being part of this incredible journey. Thank you football, thank you Nigeria.”
Oparanozie had a successful career in the Chinese Women’s Super League and represented Nigeria’s national team on different occasions.
She started at Bayelsa Queens and later played for Delta Queens and Düvenciler Lisesispor.
In 2012, Oparanozie transferred to Rossiyanka in the Russian Women’s Football Championship. She had a successful stint there, playing in the UEFA Women’s Champions League and scoring a goal. After that, she moved to VfL Wolfsburg in the Bundesliga for the 2013-14 season.