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Rohr invites Simon, Success for Libya, drops Simy





’Tana Aiyejina

Super Eagles coach, Gernot Rohr, has invited winger Moses Simon and ex-junior international Isaac Success alongside 22 other players for this month’s 2019 Africa Cup of Nations qualifying fixtures against Libya’s Mediterranean Knights.

But Italy-based Simy Nwankwo, who was in the squad in the AFCON qualifier against Seychelles in September, suffered a shock omission, while Porto midfielder Kelechi Nwakali, was dropped by the German manager after making the squad against Seychelles.

The first leg holds on October 13 at the Godswill Akpabio Stadium, Uyo with the return fixture billed for Stade Taieb Mhiri, Sfax, three days later.

New Levante signing Simon makes a return to the side after being dropped from the Russia 2018 World Cup on the eve of the tournament, due to injury, while Watford forward Success has another chance to stake a fight for a place in the team, having been ignored since he made his senior debut against Senegal on March 23, 2017.

Towering Crotone forward, Nwankwo would be disappointed not to have made Rohr’s list after he grabbed his first international goal in a ceremonial tie against Liberia in Monrovia last month.

Captain Mikel Obi is also omitted from the double-header after missing the tie against Seychelles.

Arsenal forward Alex Iwobi, who scored the goal against Zambia that qualified Nigeria for the 2018 World Cup in Uyo a year ago, is also back to the squad alongside Italy-based duo William Troost-Ekong and Olaoluwa Aina. The trio missed the 3-0 win over Seychelles in Mahe last month due to injury.

In-form Ahmed Musa, who scored a cracker against Seychelles, also made the cut for the game with young goalkeeper Francis Uzoho, Brighton centre-back Leon Balogun and Leicester midfielder Wilfred Ndidi joining the Saudi Arabia-based player in the squad.

China-based forward OdionIghalo and Russia-based defender Bryan  Idowu are also called up against Group E leaders Libya in the Match day 3 and 4 games.

Enyimba goalkeeper Ikechukwu Ezenwa is the only home-based player in the squad.

All the invited players are to report to Uyo, the Akwa Ibom State capital, on October 8.

The Eagles are currently third in Group E of the AFCON qualifiers after losing 2-0 to South Africa in Uyo last year before bouncing back to beat Seychelles 3-0 awa y from home.

Libya and South Africa are tied on four points but the North Africans lead the group on superior goals margin.

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