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WCQ: Super Eagles reach full strength as Central African Republic land in Lagos

ALL the invited Super Eagles players will be in Lagos by Tuesday night for Thursday’s Qatar 2022 World Cup qualifier against Central African Republic, according to team officials.

As at Tuesday evening, 22 of the 23 players were at the team’s Eko Hotel, Victoria Island base preparing for the fixture.
There were already 16 players in town for the match by Monday night, with six more joining them on Wednesday.

Goalkeeper Francis Uzoho, Nantes forward Moses Simon, Cyprus-based defender Shehu Abdullahi and Spain-based Kenneth Omeruo as well as strikers Kelechi Iheanacho of Leicester City and Victor Osimhen of Napoli were the latest arrivals on Tuesday.

The only player still being expected as at Tuesday evening was first-choice goalkeeper Maduka Okoye, who is based in the Netherlands with Sparta Rotterdam.

Meanwhile, the Central African Republic’s 35-man contingent landed in Lagos on Tuesday evening, two days to the encounter
The Super Eagles will host Central African Republic on Thursday at the Teslim Balogun Stadium in Lagos before facing the same team again in Douala, Cameroon on Sunday to complete thee double-header.

While Nigeria are on top of African qualifying Group C with six points from two matches, the Central Africans are bottom with just one point and need to win at least one of the games to stand any chance of advancing to the playoffs.

However, given the huge gap in quality and FIFA ranking (Nigeria are ranked 36th in the world, Central African Republic 114th), the Super Eagles are expected to prevail and enhance their prospects for the playoffs.

Both teams are missing key players, with midfield strongmen Wilfred Ndidi and Oghenekaro Etebo as well as Alex Iwobi missing for Nigeria, while Central African Republic will be without their biggest star Geoffrey Kondogbia of Atletico Madrid.

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Naija Times