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‘I fear Mikel wants to go the way of Victor Moses’

Former Super Eagles left back Ifeanyi Udeze has expressed fears about the absence of Super Eagles captain John Mikel Obi from Nigeria’s squad to face Libya in the Group E, 2019 Africa Cup of Nations qualifiers later this month.

Mikel was missing in Nigeria’s 3-0 win over Seychelles on September 8 in their match day 2 game away in Victoria.

Udeze bared his mind on Brila FM on Tuesday.

“He (Mikel) seems to prefer the games he plays now for Nigeria,” Udeze opined.

“If he wants to go Moses way, just do it. He is trying to retire gradually that’s why he is choosing games to play.

Udeze insisted that is bad precedence for the other players in the Eagles fold.

“For me, it’s not a good example for the other players who will start having problems with the coach and it could divide the house for a team hoping to qualify and hopes to halt their absence at the AFCON.

”Mikel could have come around although if he was in the 18 and is not dressed, that means he has denied a player in the team a space, and chance to play,” the onetime West Bromwich Albion defender concluded.

The Nigeria Football Federation have however explained the rationale behind dropping the Tiajin Teda midfielder. The NFF revealed that the former Chelsea star was excluded in order to recover fully from his injury setback.

The first leg of the qualifiers holds in Uyo on October 13 while the return leg will take place three days later in Sfax, Tunisia – adopted home for the Libyans who are currently topping Group E with four points ahead of South Africa, Nigeria and Seychelles.

About Lanre Oyetade

A multiple award winner in Economics and business journalism, Lanre Oyetade has served close to two decades in the media industry, spanning different notable stables, where he is privileged to have risen to the position of a title editor. A masters degree holder in Economics from the University of Lagos and doctoral student at the Babcock University, he is a winner of the prestigious NMMA Capital Market Award for two consecutive years (2004 & 2005), and was also a nominee for the body’s banking and finance and money market awards for two years. In 2013, he also won the Most Outstanding Business-Reporting Title Editor award of the National Institute of Marketing of Nigeria (NIMN). A minister in the LORDS’s vineyard, he has been an inspirational speaker and resource person at many corporate and religious fora since early 2004, and has so far authored three books on the capital market; on personal effectiveness, and on personal finance, in 2008 and 2014, respectively.