- Odion Ighalo has opened up on all that transpired shortly before Nigeria’s crucial game with Ghana in Abuja
- The Super Eagles only needed to defeat the Black Stars to qualify for the World Cup, but failed to do so
- Ighalo revealed he was supposed to start with Victor Osimhen, but plans by the technical team changed
Nigerian international, Odion Ighalo has expressed disappointment that the Super Eagles missed out on the 2022 FIFA World Cup in Qatar.
The three-time African champions were close to qualifying for the global showpiece and only needed to beat Ghana in Abuja.
The first leg of the final round of the qualifiers had ended 0-0 at the Baba Yara Stadium in Kumasi - with the final 90 minutes to be decided in the Nigerian capital.
Super Eagles ex-coach, Augustine Eguavoen had invited Ighalo to the team, needing the experience of the former Manchester United player against the Black Stars.
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However, the striker ended up on the bench for most of the game, and somehow it ended 1-1 at the Moshood Abiola Stadium to see Ghana progress to the World Cup.
In a chat with Oma Akatugba of Oma Sports TV, Ighalo disclosed that a lot had happened and was happening with the Super Eagles:
“There are so many things going on in the Super Eagles. I am the guy that does not talk much, and I don’t create problems. I go on my lane and that’s why I’m in Saudi Arabia; I do my thing and live my life. I don’t want issues."
Ighalo claimed that heading into the crucial qualifier, he and Osimhen had trained throughout the week and were meant to start together.
“They told me two hours before the game that I was not going to start. We were having lunch and they had to call me out that we want to this and that. Even the coach did not call me."
Instead, Ighalo added, Joseph Yobo was sent to let him know about being dropped to the bench.
“I said no problem. Senior man, no problem, he is the coach, my prayer is that whatever the formation is, we win the game. God just said we were not going to the World Cup.”
Jose Peseiro reveals AFCON plan
Sports Brief earlier reported on Nigeria's coach, Jose Peseiro revealing his plans to building a team to win the 2023 Africa Cup of Nations in the Ivory Coast next year.
The Portuguese trainer took over as coach of the Super Eagles, after Eguaveon failed to see the three-time African champions to qualification for the World Cup in Qatar.
According to Peseiro, the Nigerian national team have what it takes to return to the summit of African football.
Source: Sports Brief News