Super Eagles coach Stephen Keshi has confirmed attacking midfielder, Babatunde Michael, will not be part of the game against Sudan in Khartoum on Saturday.
The Volyn Lutsk player has been ruled out of the crucial 2015 Africa Cup of Nations qualifier after failing to recover on time from the injury he sustained with his club.
The player has, however, accepted his fate and is looking to be fit before the second leg fixture in Abuja on October 15.
“We have good cover for him and we pray that he bounces back before the return leg against Sudan in Nigeria,” Keshi said during the team’s practice at the National Stadium in Abuja on Tuesday.
Michael, who just recovered after his wrist was fractured at the World Cup in Brazil, was not listed when Volyn played a 2-2 draw against Vorskla on Friday in the Ukrainian league.
The player regretted not being part of the team in the current campaign so far.
He said, “I really want to play this game against Sudan but fate says I will not. I should be back for the return leg in Nigeria. The doctors have assured me that I will be fit between four and five days’ time.”
Meanwhile, the Nigeria Football Federation President Amaju Pinnick has promised the team a new lease of life.
Amaju was with the team at their training in Abuja on Tuesday urging them to beat Sudan to usher in his new administration on a positive note.
“The last NFF regime has been wonderful in terms of achievements, and we want to continue from there,” he said.
“The Sudan game is a must-win for us because it’s the first competitive game under this dispensation. On our part, we are determined to continue to support the team and soon you will see what we will do through corporate Nigeria and the rest of the game’s supporters and sponsors.”
Eagles captain, Vincent Enyeama, assured that the team would not let the nation down in the course of qualifying for the 2015 Nations Cup.
Nigeria have just one point in two games after losing to Congo 3-2 in Calabar and playing a goalless draw with South Africa in Cape Town last month. The African champions are third in Group A behind the two teams.
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