Ekpo Clamours For Inclusion of Home-Based Players For Algeria Clash

Ekpo Clamours For Inclusion of Home-Based Players For Algeria Clash

By James Agberebi:

Former Nigeria international, Friday Ekpo, wants the Super Eagles coach Gernot Rohr to give home-based players a chance in his team ahead of next month's 2018 World Cup qualifier against Algeria in Uyo.


Just recently, media reports had it that the German coach said he wouldn't be inviting any home-based players, claiming they be match rusty because the NPFL season ended a few weeks back.

Reacting to the development, Ekpo posited that some of the overseas-based players are not regulars in their teams.

Zenith Ziva

"The question we should ask is whether most of our foreign-based players are first team starters in their various clubs," Ekpo told Completesportsnigeria.com

"The NPFL just ended some three weeks ago and I believe we have some quality players in the league that if given the opportunity they will equally do well.

"The home-based players always report to camp early before the foreign-based players. And training with them for just one week is enough to give the coach an idea of the ones he will use," Ekpo reiterated.

The 1992 Africa Cup of Nations bronze medal winner however stated that Rohr should be supported irrespective of who gets invited.

"Like we always say, the coach has the final say on who gets invited and who doesn't, but the most important thing is to give the team the necessary support to succeed."

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  • Onigbende. Now Friday Ekpo. All are fighting for a place in the team for the home-based players. Fine and good. The only reason I feel they have a point is that although these home base may not play proper due to fitness issue or not good enough to make the 14 players required in a match to end, their inclusion will give a ferling of belonging. The thinking of the coach is that the league is on tecess or break and so the players are enjoying and will not be fit. One was even shot drad on holiday somewhere.  About 18-21 players will be invited and only 14 will have the opportunity to feature. Considering the expenses to bring in a foreign base player into the country and back, some local players can be informed noe so that they  have this time till the camping time to get themselves fit. Again, the coaching crew know the regular home-based players that will always be invited when the league resumes. So why not use this local league break excuse and try other foreign based players, especially defenders. Ogu from an Israeli team is an example. There are other players all over. The Zamalek goal scorer vs Sundown is another player. Isaac Success, if he is not 'injured' is another player. As a new coach, this is the type of open window he has to try other players recommended or discovered by him. The bottom line is that the coach is working and impressing us and so whatever decision he takes should be supported trusting that he knows what he is doing.