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Osimhen missing as 21 Super Eagles stars train for Sierra Leone clash

VICTOR Osimhen was the only notable absentee today as the Super Eagles held their first training session for the Africa Cup of Nations qualifying clash against Sierra Leone.

The three-time African champions would seal their place in next year’s tournament in Cote d’Ivoire if they avoid defeat against the Leone Stars in Monrovia, Liberia on Sunday.

Osimhen, who became the first African in history to finish a season as the top scorer in Serie A, inspired Napoli to their first league title in 33 years with his 26 goals in the Italian top flight.

He was conspicuously missing this evening as the Super Eagles trained at the Mobolaji Johnson Arena in Lagos under the supervision of Jose Peseiro and his staff.

There were already 19 players in camp as at last night, and they were joined today by Porto left-back Zaidu Sanusi and team captain Ahmed Musa, who also took part in the session.

Osimhen’s fellow Serie A star Ademola Lookman of Atalanta was also at the session, along with regular invitees like Leicester City pair Kelechi Iheanacho and Wilfred Ndidi, Everton midfielder Alex Iwobi, Villarreal forward Samuel Chukwueze and Leganes defender Kenneth Omeruo.

England-based Taiwo Awoniyi of Nottingham Forest, Joe Aribo of Southampton and Semi Ajayi of West Ham also participated in the training session, with Ajax defender Calvin Bassey and Hoffeinheim centre-back Kevin Akpoguma also involved.

The Nigeria Premier Football League championship play-offs quartet of Bendel Insurance midfielder Divine Nwachukwu, Rivers United goalkeeper Victor Sochima and defender Ebube Duru, as well as goalkeeper Olorunleke Ojo of newly crowned champions Enyimba, also trained with the Super Eagles the day after playing at the same venue.

The Super Eagles lead Group A of the qualifying campaign with nine points from four matches, two ahead of Guinea-Bissau, with Sierra Leone third, two points further back.

Sao Tome and Principe are already out of the race for the two tickets, as they have only one point from their first four fixtures.

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