The Super Eagles captain is preferred in attack for Tuesday’s friendly against the Indomitable Lions, while there is also a place for Uzoho in goal
Ahmed Musa, Francis Uzoho and Valentine Ozornwafor will start for Nigeria against Cameroon in Tuesday’s international friendly, coach Gernot Rohr has confirmed.
Speaking after Monday’s training at the Wiener Neustadt Stadium, the German tactician opened up on the major changes that would be noticed during the second game versus Toni Conceicao’s men.
Captain Musa who was a second-half replacement for Kelechi Iheanacho gets the nod to lead the Super Eagles’ attack, while APOEL FC’s Uzoho will man the goalpost instead of Sparta Rotterdam’s Maduka Okoye.
Due to injury, William Troost-Ekong will not be available for action against the five-time African champions. In his absence, Galatasaray’s Ozornwafor is expected to marshal the backline of the three-time African champions.
“Observations are positive because some of the players who arrived from Nigeria were not so fit for the first game. They have now recovered well, and we should be better physically,” he told Super Eagles media as per Completesports.
“There will be some changes in the team, Francis Uzoho will be in goal, [Ahmed] Musa will start because he is fit, we lost Troost-Ekong so Valentine [Ozornwafor] will come in for the first time.
“There matches are made to test some players who have not played so much and also to have new organization maybe try something different and we want to win it also because we have never won in Austria after four games.”
For the 67-year-old, the team’s progress matters more than the result achieved against the 2021 Africa Cup of Nations hosts.
“The most important thing is not the result, the most important is to progress to learn to work,” he continued.
“We have 16 players who could not come, five central defenders, two defensive midfielders [Joe] Aribo, [Frank] Onyeka and all the strikers could not come, the wingers, [Samuel] Kalu, Henry [Onyekuru], [Victor] Osimhen, Simy [Nwankwo] and [Umar] Sadiq also because of the play-offs.
“It is a different camping but we have some experience now, we are interested in the new players and what they can do in this match against Cameroon.”
Andre-Frank Zambo Anguissa’s 37th-minute encounter separated the two teams in the first game played on Friday.