Chief Coach of the Super Eagles, Stephen Keshi, has said that he was so sad with John Mikel Obi for failing to play for Nigeria in the recent international friendly matches against Botswana and Zambia but could feature for Chelsea less than a week in their Premier League game yesterday.
Mikel was left out of the two friendly ties after he complained of injury. The coach warned he would see whether Mikel would play against Liverpool in the Premier League yesterday and Mikel, with no sign of injury, featured in the tie in which Chelsea lost 1-2 at Stamford Bridge.
Speaking early today, Keshi said he was shocked to see Mikel play for Chelsea. He said though he won’t sanction the player from the senior national team, he would note his disloyalty to him.
“To be honest, I was disappointed that Mikel could play for his club against Liverpool, but I am not going to sanction him from Eagles. We don’t need to blow the issue of Mikel out of proportion. A lot of Nigerians want me to discipline him, instead of that, I will give him more chance to play for Eagles and an opportunity to correct himself,” he said.
The Eagles’ handler said he will not allow Mikel’s issue to distract him from the task ahead, adding that his immediate plan now is to bring Nigerian football back on track after the Eagles failed to qualify for next year’s Africa Cup of Nations.
Meanwhile, Keshi, has expressed readiness to recall Blackburn Rovers’ player, Yakubu Aiyegbeni and FC Montpellier’s striker, John Utaka, to the Eagles, saying the team would need their experience.
Keshi said he was not surprised at the players’ recent form as they have the quality to play for any team in the world. Keshi said their recall back to the Eagles should be a challenge for them and an opportunity to let the younger players learn from them
“Utaka and Aiyegbeni are good, outstanding and experienced players that the Eagles need now in our bid to get the team back to the winning way. We need to balance this team by playing experienced players with the young ones. And I’m sure that their return to the Eagles would be a challenge to them to prove their worth again,” he said.
— Sunday Akintoye & Olusegun Abidoye
via PM News
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