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Siasia Rules Out Iheanacho

Posted: Jul 23, 2015 at 2:13 am   /   by   /   comments (0)

By Tony Ezimakor  –  Abuja


Under-23 Coach, Samson Siasia, has ruled out Manchester City wizkid, Kelechi Iheanacho, from the second leg of the African U-23 Championship in a fortnight.

The coach has also told Claude Leroy not to celebrate the away goal in Port Harcourt, vowing to defeat him before his home fans in a fortnight.

Kelechi Iheanacho

Kelechi Iheanacho

Speaking shortly after a crisis meeting with members of the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) Technical Committee in Abuja, Siasia said that Congo cannot stop Nigeria.

“I don’t have any fears; I don’t know why.  But I am very confident that we will qualify,” said Siasia.

“We have good strikers and I believe we will create the chances. All we need to do is ensure that we take our chances and avoid wastages.”

He ruled out any late invitation of Europe based stars including Iheanacho and Belgium based Imoh Ezekiel, pointing out that the present  squad was capable of getting the desired result in Pointe Noire.

Siasia promised to intensity training on how to convert chances, adding that the NFF had assured of a hitch free travel plan for team.

He expressed the hope that the NFF leadership would go further by providing a chartered aircraft for the trip.

“The NFF has promised that the travel arrangement will be good, so that we don’t move about here and there. But if Congo could come here on chartered aircraft, why can’t we do the same. If we are talking about qualifying, we just have do all that is possible to qualify,” said Siasia.

However, the NFF said on its website that Siasia had invited five more players to camp for the return leg against Congo.

The players, according to NFF, were to add bite to the team’s attack and solidify the defence as the team intensifies preparations for the return leg on August 2.

The invited players are overseas-based Aminu Umar and Abdullahi Shehu, Semiu Liadi of Warri Wolves, Ndifreke Effiong of Abia Warriors, Enyimba and Flying Eagles midfielder, Kingsley Sokari.

The home-based players are expected to report to camp immediately, while those based overseas will hit camp weekend.

The players permitted to travel after the team’s first leg were expected to report on Wednesday.

The aggregate winners of the two-legged encounter will claim a spot in the eight-nation African Under-23 Championship in Senegal where the topmost three teams will automatically qualify for the Rio Olympics.

Nigeria did not qualify for the London Olympics Men’s football event.